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=BK:1iisiv« i>^ .on by David Walkkk, Ksq., Manchester, who owns the Original l>rawings. 

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From a large vtater-cclour drtnoing in the pcssessiwi of Her Grace the Duchess of Bedford, 











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Apart from her work, full record of which is made in the 
following pages, there was in the life of Kate Greenaway one 
outstanding feature — her friendship with John Ruskin. To this, 
without the permission of the great critic^s legal representatives, 
no sort of justice could have been done. It is therefore our 
first duty and pleasure to put on record our great indebtedness 
to Mrs. Arthur Severn, Mr. Alexander Wedderburn, K.C., and 
Mr. George Allen, for their liberality in allowing us to make 
copious extracts from Ruskin*s side of the vigorous correspond- 
ence which was carried on between him and Kate Greenaway for 
so many years ; this generous permission is only accompanied by 
the proviso that, in accordance with the undertaking announced 
by the editors and publisher of the Library Edition of Ruskin's 
complete work, all of his published letters shall ultimately be 
included in that noble issue. These letters have here been 
printed with the strictest adherence to Ruskin's peculiar method 
of punctuation — long and short dashes in place of commas, 
semicolons, and the like. From Kate Greenaway's side of the 
correspondence abundant drafts have also been made, for they 
reveal the writer's character and method of thought better than 
any independent estimate could do. That no violence has been 
done to her native modesty is proved by the following letter 


Kate Greenaway 

kindly communicated to us by Mrs. Severn. It was written at 
the time when the preparation of the ultimate Life of Ruskin was 
under discussion : — 

%tk June 1900. 


My dearest Joanie — I feel it is very kind of you to 

consider my wishes about the letters, as I know of course you could do 
as you wished about them. In the later letters, I think, there is 
nothing I should object to any one reading — in the early ones nothing 
I should mind you reading ; but there might be things in some one 
would feel perhaps better not published. . . . 

I have a great many letters of his — one for nearly every day for 
three years, but they are all of the time of my early letters, before his 
great illness. Since — he has never written — as you will remember. 
I should like to have any letters in the Life, if one is written, that 
were thought desirable. 

I am not sure the later ones of mine are much in a literary way ; 
but he did say some of the earlier ones ' ought to exist as long as the 
most beautiful of my drawings should — because they were also beauti- 
ful.' I tell you this because you know how great was the affection 
between us that you will not think it conceit. I feel so honoured by 
it, that I can only feel honoured for my name ever to appear near his. 
My dearest love to you. Katie. 

From the facsimile letter given in the following pages, it will 
be observed that Kate Greenaway later on developed a habit of 
frequently employing capital letters in unusual places. These, as 
a mere eccentricity, have been corrected in transcription. 

Our gratitude — may we say the gratitude of our readers also ? 
— is due to the several ladies and gentlemen who have supplied us 
with reminiscences, correspondence, and other information duly 
acknowledged in the text ; indeed, with but one or two excep- 
tions, we have been favoured with the most obliging responses. 
Mrs. Arthur Severn, Lady Maria and the Hon. Gerald Ponsonby, 
Mrs. Frederick Locker- Lampson, Mr. Austin Dobson, Miss 


Violet Dickinson, Mr. William Marcus Ward, the Rev. W. J. 
Loftie, Mr. Edwards Jones, Mr. Ernest G. Brown, and the late 
Mr. Edmund Evans, whose death at the age of seventy-nine 
occurred as this book was passing through the press, all have 
shown an interest and have extended a friendly help which can- 
not be too highly appreciated or too cordially recognised. 

A word must be said concerning the illustrations. The 
published works of Kate Greenaway are known, and ought to 
be found, in every house where children live and are loved. We 
have therefore confined ourselves, with a few rare and intentional 
exceptions, to work quite unknown to the public, such as early 
drawings of the cottage at RoUeston where her career, undreamed 
of as yet, was being determined, thumb-nail sketches with which 
she embellished her letters, and more important drawings done for 
sale to picture-buyers or for presentation to friends. About half 
a hundred have been reproduced with particular care by the ^ three- 
colour process,' for the most part with extraordinary success, the 
rest by other methods suited to the exigencies of the case. For 
the use of the originals we are indebted to the kindness of many 
owners — to Her Grace the Duchess of Bedford, to Mr. Ernest G. 
Brown, Miss Violet Dickinson, Mr. Alfred Emmott, M.P., Mr. 
W. Finch, Mr. Campbell S. Holberton, Mr. Charles P. Johnson, 
Mrs. W. Levy, the Hon. Gerald Ponsonby, Mr. John Riley, Mr. 
Stuart M. Samuel, M.P., Mrs. Arthur Severn, Mr. Henry Silver, 
the Hon. Mrs. W. Le Poer Trench, Mr. Harry J. Veitch, Mr. Wm. 
Marcus Ward, and Mr. Creeser, as well as to Mr. John Greenaway. 
Other iUustrations come from the collections of Miss Evans, Lady 
Victoria Herbert, Mrs. F. Locker-Lampson, Rev. W. J. Loftie, 
F.S.A., Lady Pontifex, and Mr. B. Elkin Mocatta. To all of 
them we express our hearty thanks, and to Messrs. Cassell & Co. 
our indebtedness for having permitted the publication of the 

border illustration with Mr. Austin Dobson's ^ Home Beauty,' the 


Kate Greenaway 

copyright of which they hold ; and to Messrs. M^Caw, Stevenson 
& Orr, Ltd., of Bel&st, similar acknowledgments must be made for 
according their consent in respect of the three famous Christmas 
cards which appear in colour. Our thanks are also due to Messrs. 
Frederick Warne & Co. for their courtesy in allowing us to repro- 
duce the illustrations of ^Bubbles* and ^The Bubble' as well as 
the end-papers. The last-named are based upon the nursery wall- 
paper to which, with the artist's permission, the illustrations of one 
of her Almanacks were adapted by Mr. David Walker. Messrs. 
Warne are the present holders of the bulk of Kate Greenaway's 
published copyright work as well as of the stock of books which 
were originally issued by Messrs. G. Routledge & Sons, and from 
them nearly all the books dealt with in the following pages are 
still to be obtained. 





Introductory i 


Early Years : Birth — Autobiography of Childhood — First Visit 
to Rolleston — Love of Flowers — Family Trouble — Evening 
Parties and Entertainments 8 


Childhood in Rolleston : Early Reading — Adventures in London 
Streets — ^A Community of Dolls — Buckingham Palace — 
Life in Rolleston — Education — Brother and Father . 21 


Student Days and Early Success : Early Promise and Art 
Classes — South Kensington Prizes — Lady Butler — Dudley 
Gallery — Rev. W. J. Loftie and Messrs. Marcus Ward — 
Amateur Theatricals — Toy -Books and Fairy Tales — 
Progress 41 



The Triumph of Under the Window : Royal Academy — Mr. 
and Mrs. Edmund Evans — Mr. Evans's Colour-printing — 
John Ruskin on Kate Greenaway — Tofo — Randolph 
Caldecotty and Mr. Walter Crane . . 55 

■ ■ • 

Xlll c 

Kate Greenaway 




Christmas Cards and Books — H. Stacy Marks, R.A., John 

Ruskin, and Frederick Locker-Lampson . . 73 



The Empress Frederick, Mrs. Richmond Ritchie, Ruskin, and 
Mr. Punch — A Day in a Chili^s Life — Little Ann and 
Mother Goose 98 


1882 [continued) and 1883 

The Ruskin and Severn Friendship ripens — At Brantwood — Ike 
Art of England — Ruskin's Advice — Kate Greena way's First 
Almanack — A Greenaway * Boom ' — Mr. Austin Dobson . 1 09 



Language of Flowers — Mavor^s Spelling- Book — Dame Wiggins 
of Lee — Ruskin Correspondence — His Tuition and Plans 
for Co-operation — Intimacy with Mrs. Severn and her 
Children 127 


1885 AND 1886 

The Move to Frognal — Ruskin : Letters and Confidences, 

Praise and Blame, his Illness — Mrs. Allingham . . 142 



Kate Greenaway as a Correspondent — Her Letters to Ruskin 
— Her Friends — Learning Perspective — Ruskin's Last 




Letters — Tie Pied Piper of Hameiin — Mrs. AUingham, 
R.W.S.— The Book of Games— Elected to the Royal In- 
stitute of Painters in Water-Colours — Paris Exhibition — 
Death of Mr. John Greenaway, Sr. .163 



Kate Greenaway's First Exhibition — The Hon. Gerald Ponsonby 
— Almanacks — Contributions to the Columbian Exposition, 
Chicago — Book - plates — Lady Maria Ponsonby — Works 
Sold — 75^ Ladies* Home Journal — Death of Mrs. Greena- 
way — Lady Mayo — Brantwood again — Kate Greenaway's 
Criticism of Modern Art — Marie Bashkirtseff — Friendship 
with Miss Violet Dickinson — Religious Opinions — Ruskin 
— ^Views on Mr. George Meredith, etc. . .179 



The Last of the Almanacks — Opinions on Books, Pictures, 
the New Woman, and Eternal Man — Her Defence of 
Ruskin 201 


I 898-1 90 I 

Kate Greenaway's Third Exhibition — Correspondence with 
John Ruskin, and Mr. and Mrs. Stuart M. Samuel — Her 
Views on Art, Religion, and Books — Her Oil-painting — 
Death of Ruskin — Illness and Death of Kate Greenaway — 
Posthumous Exhibition — The Kate Greenaway Memorial 224 


Verse-writing : Kate Greenaway's Feeling for Poetry — Problem, 
Tragedy, and Resignation — Charm of her Verses for 
Children — On Death 257 


Kate Greenaway 



The Artist : A Review and an Estimate . . . 265 

List of Books, etc., illustrated wholly or in part by Kate 

Greenaway . . . . . 28J 

Index . . . . . . . . .291 


List of Illustrations 




J 3- 



. S. 

• II. 




V 21. 
* 22. 

y »3- 
/ ^4- 

/ 26. 

Off to the Village Duckets of Bedford . Frontispiece 

Sisters ^/i^arf M. Samuel^ Esq., M,P. . 4 

In the Chappells* Cottage at Rol- John Greenatway, Esq. 

leston — ^The Kitchen 
The Kitchen Pump and Old John Greenanjuay, Esq. 

Cheese Press, Rolleston 
Winter, 1892 .... 
The Open Door .... 
The Chappells* Cottage, Farm, 

and Croft at Rolleston 
Thomas Chappell (< Dadad *) 
Kate Greenaway's Student-work 

The Elf Ring . 

The Little Model 

' Mary had a Little Lamb * 

Bubbles : — 

(1) The Bubble 

(2} Bubbles 
Christmas Cards . 
The Little Go-cart 
Pink Ribbons 
A Calm in a Teacup 
Out for a Walk . 
' Lucy Locket lost her Pocket * 
Two Girls going to School . 
The Old Farm-house . 
The Red Boy 
Many Happy Returns of the Day 
The Naughty Little Girl (4 pages) 

The Cherry Woman . 
Taking in the Roses 

Stuart M. Samuel, Esq., M.P. . 
Mrs, Arthur Severn . 
John Greenanvay, Esq. 

John Greenanvay, Esq. 
Nat. Art Library, Victoria and 
Albert Museum, S. Kensington 
John Greenaioay, Esq. 
Mrs. J. St. G. IVhitty 
Mrs. Arthur Se*vern . 








}The Hon. Gerald Ponsonby between 
pp. 64 and 65 
fVm. Marcus fVard, Esq. . 74 

Harry J. Veitch, Esq. 80 

Stuart M. Samuel, Esq., M.P. . 88 
Mrs. Arthur Severn ... 94 
Ernest G. Broavn, Esq. .100 

fF. Finch, Esq. . .104 

John Riley, Esq. • xi4 

Campbell S. Holberton, Esq. 122 

Charles P. Johnson, Esq. . . 1 30 
Mrs. Arthur Severn . 136 

Miss Violet Severn between pp. 140 

and 141 
Harry J. Veitch, Esq. 150 

Stuart M. Samuel, Esq., M.P. . 160 


Kate Greenaway 



4 29. 







7 44. 

V 46. 



J 51. 

«^ 52. 

• 53- 

The Garden Seat 

Happy Returns of the Day 


Portrait of a Lady 

Joan Ponsonby, 1891 

Brother and Sister 

The Bracken Gatherers 

A Surrey Cottage 

The Pink Sash . 

The Peacock Girl 

Vera Evelyn Samuel 

Two Girls in a Garden 

The Dancing of the Felspar Fairies 

A Baby in White 

Book-plate of Miss Vera Evelyn 

Kate Greenaway before the Fates 

The Fable of the Girl and her 
Milk Pail 

The MuflF (unfinished) 

The Stick Fire . 

Two at a Stile 


Springtime . 

Swansdown . 


The May Dance 

Alfy (unfinished) 

Nursery Wall Paper, reproduced 
in miniature as the end-papers 
of the book (by permission of 
Messrs. Frederick Warne & Co.) 

Harry J. Veitch, Esq. 

Stuart M. Samuel, Esq., M.P. . 

Harry J. Feitch, Esq. 

The Hon. Gerald Ponsonby 

The Hon. Gerald Ponsonby 

Charles P. Johnson, Esq. . 

The Hon. Mrs. fV. he Poer Trench 

Alfred Emmott, Esq., M.P. 

Stuart M. Samuel, Esq., M.P. . 

John Greenaivay, Esq. 

Stuart M. Samuel, Esq., M.P. . 

John Riley, Esq. 

Mrs. Arthur Severn . 

Stuart M. Samuel, Esq., M.P. . 

Stuart M. Samuel, Esq., M.P. . 

Mrs. Arthur Se*vem . 

W. Finch, Esq 

John Greenaiuay, Esq. 

Harry J. Feitch, Esq. 

Mrs. W. Levy .... 

The Hon. Gerald Ponsonby 

Henry Silver, Esq. . 

Stuart M. Samuel, Esq., M.P. . 

John Greenanvay, Esq. 

Miss Fiolet Dickinson 

John Greenanjuay, Esq. 

David fFalker, Esq. Inside Covers 



























I. John Greenaway (Father of Kate John Greenavjay, Esq. 
Greenaway). By Birket Foster, 
A 2. Kate Greenaway *s Student-work . 

^ 3. Kate Greenaway at the ages of x6 
and 21. (From Photographs) 


Nat. Art Library, Victoria and 
Albert Museum, S. Kensington 



List of Illustrations 



• 4. Pencil Sketches of * Tragedy * 
v5. John Greenaway (Brother of Kate 

/6. Pencil Sketches . . . . 

V 7. Kate Greenaway, 1880. (From 

a Photograph by Elliott Sc 
^ 8. Frederick Locker-Lampson . 
/ 9. The Twins .... 
/lo. Little Dinky 
/I I. Water-colour Drawings on Letters 
yi2. Water-colour Drawing on Letter 

1 3. Letter from John Ruskin to Kate 

Greenaway, 27th Dec. 1882 

14. 'Home-Beauty* . . . . 
^15. Kate Greenaway's Home, 39, 

Frognal, Hampstead. (From a 

/ 16. Tea Room leading out from the 
Studio, 39, Frognal, Hampstead. 
(From a Photograph) 

• 17. The Studio, 39, Frognal, Hamp- 
stead. (From a Photograph) 
18. Letter from John Ruskin to Kate 
Greenaway, 8th Nov. 1886 

•19. 'Rover.' (From a Photograph) . 

y20. Pencil and Tint Drawing . 

y2i. Kate Greenaway in her Studio, 
1895. (From a Private Photo- 
graph by Mrs. Wm. Miller) 

^22. Mabel Ponsonby . 

/ 23. Eileen Ponsonby. 

24. Sketch on Letter to Miss Violet 

Dickinson, 8th July 1896 

25. Sketch on Letter to Miss Violet 

Dickinson, loth Dec. 1896 

26. Sketch on Letter to Miss Violet 

Dickinson, 19th Jan. 1897 

27. Letter from Kate Greenaway to 

John Ruskin ('Kate Nickleby *) 

28. Sketch on Letter to Miss Violet 


The Rev. W. J. LoftUy F.S,A. . 50 
John Gnefunvay, Esq. 52 

Tke Rrv. W. J. Loftie, F.S.A. . 66 



Mrs. Frederick Locker-Lampson . 86 
Mrs. Frederick Locker- between pp. 90 
LampsQn and 91 

Mrs. Frederick Locker-Lampson . 9 a 
Mrs. Frederick Locker-Lampson . 96 
Mrs. Arthur Severn . 

Mrs. Croft 

Mrs. Arthur Severn . 

B. Elkin Mocattay Esq. 

The Hon. Gerald Ponsonby 
The Hon. Gerald Ponsonby 
Miss Fiolet Dickinson 

Miss FioUt Dickinson 

Miss Fiolet Dickinson 

Mrs. Arthur Severn . 

Miss Fiolet Dickinson 






• • 







• • 


• • 


• • 


• ■ 


• • 



Kate Greenaway 




'Ronald's Clock' 

Mrs. M. H, Spielmann 



Sketch-design for the Plate affixed 

Mrs. Arthur Lasenty Liberty 

• »55 

above the Kate Greenaway Cot 


in the Gt. Ormond St. Hospital 


Pencil Study from Life 

M. H. Spielmanny Esq. 



Letter from Kate Greenaway to 
John Ruskin 

Mrs. Arthur Severn . 



The Picnic 

John Greenofwajf, Esq. 



Pen Sketch 

John Greenanvay^ Esq. 


35 to 90. Fifty -six Thumb-nail and other Sketches with Pen and Pencil, 
throughout the Text, viz. : 

26 on Letters to John Ruskin, in the possession of Mrs. Arthur 

Severn (pp. i, 8, 18, 21, 23, 116, 151, 162, 163, 165, 179, 197, 

199, 202, 207, 222, 232, 233, 237, 239, 241, 243, 247, 277, 

283, 284). 
5 from Pencil Sketches, in the possession of M. H. Spielmann, 

Esq. (pp. 5, 55, 123, 131, 245). 
5 from the MS. of Kate Greena way's Autobiography, in the 

possession of John Greenaway, Esq. (pp. 26, 30, 33, 35, 40). 
5 from Book-plates, etc., in the possession of Mrs. Frederick 

Locker-Lampson (pp. 20, 54, 72, 88, 97). 
4 on Letters to Miss Violet Dickinson, in the possession of Miss 

Violet Dickinson (pp. 63, 210, 213, 221). 
4 Early Rough Sketches for Christmas Cards and Valentines, 

in the possession of Wm. Marcus Ward, Esq. (pp. 45, 75, 

279, 280). 
2 from Pencil Sketches, in the possession of Lady Pontifex (pp. 

6 and 108). 
I from a Book-plate, in the possession of Lady Victoria Herbert 

(?• 7)- 
I on a Letter to Miss Lily Evans, in the possession of Miss Lily 

Evans (p. 107}. 

I Skit by Randolph Caldecott, in the possession of John Green- 
away, Esq. (p. 69). 

I Poem by Austin Dobson, Esq., in the album of Ernest 
G. Brown, Esq. (p. vii.). 

I Sketch-plan of Kitchen at Rolleston (p. 1 1). 

TAe niusfrattottt in colour in this ^volume have been engraved and printed by 

The Menpes Press. 




About the name of Kate Greenaway there floats 
a perfume so sweet and fragrant that even at the 
moment of her death we thought more of the 
artist we admired than of the friend we had lost. 
Grateful for the work she had produced, with all 
its charm and tender cheerfulness, the world has 
recognised that that work was above all things 
sincere. And, indeed, as her art was, so were her 
character and her mind : never was an artist's self 
more trulv reflected in that which her hand pro- 
duced. AH the sincerity and genuine effort seen 
in her drawings, all the modesty, humour, and 

J^""*^ love, all the sense of beauty and of charm, all the 
^--IL daintiness of conception and realisation, the 
^ ~~ keen intelligence, the understanding of children, 
the feeling for landscape, with all the purity, 
simplicity, and grace of mind — all those quali- 
ties, in short, which sing to us out of her 
bright and happy pages — were to be found in the personality 
of the artist herself. All childhood, all babyhood, held her 
love: a love that was a little wistful perhaps. Retiring, and 
even shy, to only a few she gave her friendship — a precious 
possession. For how many are there who, gifted as she was, have 
achieved a triumph, have conquered the applause and admiration 
of two hemispheres, and yet have chosen to withdraw into the shade, 
caring for no praise but such as she might thankfully accept as 
a mark of what she was trying to accomplish, never realising (such 
was her innate modesty) the extent and significance of her success ? 

I I 

On a Letter to 

Kate Greenaway 

Here was a fine character, transparently beautiful and simple 
as her own art, original and graceful as her own genius. Large- 
hearted and right-minded, Kate Greenaway was gentle in her 
kindness, lofty and firm in principle, forgiving to the malevolent, 
and loyal to her friends — a combination of qualities happilv not 
unrivalled among women, but rare indeed when united to attributes 
of genius. 

It is true that what Kate Greenaway mainly did was to draw 
Christmas cards, illustrate a score or two of toy-books, and produce 
a number of dainty water-colour drawings ; and that is the sum 
of her work. Why, then, is her name a household word in Great 
and Greater Britain, and even abroad where the mention of some 
of the greatest artists of England of to-day scarcely calls forth 
so much as an intelligent glance of recognition ? It is because 
of the universal appeal she made, almost unconsciously, to the 
universal heart. 

All who love childhood, even though they may not be blessed 
with the full measure of her insight and sympathy, all who love 
the fields and flowers and the brightness of healthy and sunny 
natures, must feel that Kate Greenaway had a claim on her 
country's regard and upon the love of a whole generation. She was 
the Baby's Friend, the Children's Champion, who stood absolutely 
alone in her relations to the public. Randolph Caldecott laboured , 
to amuse the little ones ; Mr. Walter Crane, to entertain them. 
They aimed at interesting children in their drawings > but Kate 
Greenaway interested us in the children themselves. She taught 
us more of the charm of their ways than we had seen before ; she 
showed us their graces, their little foibles, their thousand little 
prettinesses, the sweet little characteristics and psychology of their 
tender age, as no one else had done it before. What are Edouard 
Frire's little children to hers ? What are FrOhlich's, what are 
Richter's ? She felt, with Douglas Jerrold, that ' babes are earthly 
angels to keep us from the stars,' and has peopled for us a fairy- 
world which we recognise nevertheless for our own. She had a 
hundred imitators (from whom she suffered enough), but which 
of them is a rival on her own ground ? M. Boutet de Monvel 
was inspired by her ; but with all his draughtsman's talent and 
astonishing invention and resource, he has not what she has : he 
has given us the insouciance of childhood, but at what sacrifice 
of touch ; he has given us some of the beauty, but at what 
surrender of nearly all the lovableness and charm. And not babies 



and school-girls only, but maidens who are past the ignorance though 
not the innocence of childhood ; not roses only, but all the flowers 
of the garden ; not the fields only, but the &ir landscape of the 
English country-side, — all these things Kate Greenaway has shown 
us, with winning and delightful quaintness, and has made us all 
the happier for her own happiness in them ; and, showing us all 
these things, she has made us love them and her drawings the more 
for the teaching and the loveliness in them, and herself as well for 
having made them. 

The children who welcomed her work when it first ap(>eared 
are grown up now and are looking rather old, and those who 
bought the picture-books 'for the little ones' (as they said) but 
enjoyed them so much themselves, are mostly wearing spectacles. 
And all the while Kate Greenaway worked hard, making hundreds, 
and thousands, of her little pictures, and doing more for the 
pleasure and happiness of the little folks than most little folks 
know. So that now when her pencil and her brush are laid aside 
for ever, and herself has been called away, her life-task being done, 
it is surely well that we should remember her in affection, and 
wrap up the memory of her name in a little of the lavender of her 
love that filled her heart and welled over into her work. 

One of the charms, as has been said, most striking in the char- 
acter of ' K. G.' (as she was called by her most intimate friends 
and relatives) was her modesty. A quiet, bright little lady, whose 
fame had spread all over the world, and whose books were making 
her rich, and her publisher prosperous and content — there she was, 
whom everybody wanted to know, yet who preferred to remain 
quite retired, living with her relatives in the delightful house Mr. 
Norman Shaw had designed for her — happy when she was told 
how children loved her work, but unhappy when people who were 
not her intimate friends wanted to talk to her about it. She was, 
therefore, so little seen in the world that M. Arsine Alexandre de- 
clared his suspicion that Kate Greenaway must really have been an 
angel who would now and then visit this green earth only to leave a 
new picture-book for the children, and then fly away again. She 
has flown away for ever now ; but the gift she left behind is more 
than the gift of a book or of a row of books. She left a pure love 
of childhood in many hearts that never felt it before, and the lesson 
of a greater kindness to be done, and a delight in simple and 
tender joys. And to children her gift was not only this ; but she 
put before them pictures more beautiful in their way and quaint 


Kate Greenaway 

than had ever been seen, and she taueht them, too, to look more 
kindly on their playmates, more wisely on their own little lives, 
and with better understanding on the beauties of garden and 
meadow and sky with which Heaven has embellished the world. 
It was a great deal to do, and she did it well — so well that there is 
no sadness in her friends' memory of her ; and their gratitude is 
tinged with pride that her name will be remembered with honour 
in her country for generations to come. 

What Kate Greenaway did with her modest pencil was by 
her example to revolutionise one form of book-illustration — helped 
by Mr. Edmund Evans, the colour-printer, and his wood-blocks, 
as will be shown later on. And for a time she dressed the children 
of two continents. The smart dress with which society decks out 
its offspring, so little consonant with the idea of a natural and 
happy childhood, was repellent to Kate Greenaway. So she set 
about devising frocks and aprons, hats and breeches, funnily neat 
and prim, in the style of 1800, adding beauty and comfort to 
natural grace. In the first instance her Christmas cards spread 
abroad her dainty hncy ; then her books, and finally her almanacks 
over a period of fifteen years, carried her designs into many 
countries and made converts wherever they were seen. An 
Englishman visiting Jules Breton, in the painter's country-house in 
Normandy, found all the children in Greenaway costumes ; for 
they alone, declared Breton, fitted children and sunshine, and they 
only were worthy of beautifying the chef-J^ oeuvres du bon Dieu, 

Indeed, Kate Greenaway is known on the Continent of 
Europe along with the very few English artists whose names 
are familiar to the foreign public — with those of Millais, 
Leighton, Burne^Jones, Watts, and Walter Crane — Being recog- 
nised as the great domestic artist who, though her subjects were 
infantile, her treatment often elementary, and her little feults clear 
to the first glance, merited respect for originality of invention 
and for rare creative quality. It was realised that she was a 
the iTicoU^ the head and founder of a school — even though that 
school was but a Kindergarten — the inventor of a new way of 
seeing and doing, quite apart from the exquisite qualities of what 
she did and what she expressed. It is true that her personal 
identity may have been somewhat vague. An English customer 
was once in the shop of the chief bookseller of Lyons, who 
was showing a considerable collection of English picture-books 
for children. ' How charming they are ! ' he cried j * we have 


* Girl with blue sash and basket of roses, with a baby/ 

From a noater 'Colour dravoing in the possession oj" Stuart M. Samuel, Esq., M.P^ 



nothing like them in France. Ah,saywhat you like — Walter Crane 

and Kate Grcenaway are true artists — they are two of your greatest 

men ! ' It was explained that Kate Greenaway was a lady. The 

bookseller looked up curiously. ' I can affirm it,' 

said the visitor; 'Miss Grcenaway is a friend 

of mine.* 'Ah, truly ? ' replied the other, politely 

yet incredulous. Later on the story was duly 

recounted to Miss Grcenaway. * That docs not 

surprise me,' she replied, with a gay little laugh. 

'Only the other day a correspondent who called 

himself " a foreign admirer " sent me a photograph 

of myself which he said he had procured, and he 

asked me to put my autograph to it. It was 

the portrait of a good-looking young man with 

a black moustache. And when I explained, he 

wrote back that he feared I was laughing at him, 

as Kate is a man's name — in Holland.' 

But if her personality was a 'mystification* 
to the foreigner, there was no doubt about her art. 
In France, where she was a great fevourite, and 
where her extensive contribution of drawings 
to the Paris Exhibition of 1889 had raised her vastly in the 
opinion of those who knew her only by her picture-books, she was 
cordially appreciated. But she had been appreciated long before 
that. Nearly twenty years earlier the tribute of M. Ernest 
Chesneau was so keen and sympathetic in its insight, and so grace- 
ful in its recognition, that Mr, Ruskin declared to the Oxford 
undergraduates that no expressions of his own could vie with the 
tactful delicacy of the French critic. But in his lecture on 'The 
Art of Englajid ' {Fairyland) Ruskin found words to declare for 
himself that in her drawings 'you have the radiance and 
innocence of reinstated infant divinity showered again among the 
flowers of English meadows.' And privately he wrote to her : 
' Holbein lives for all time with his grim and ugly " Dance of 
Death " ; a not dissimilar and more beautiful immortality may be in 
store for you if you worthily apply yourself to produce a " Dance 
of Life."' 

The touchstone of all art in which there is an element of 

greatness is the appeal which it makes to the foreigner, to the 

nigh and the low alike. Kate Greenaway's appeal was unerring. 

Dr. Muther has paid his tribute, on behalf of Germany, to the 


Kate Greenaway 

extjuisite fusion of truth and grace in her picture-books, which he 
deckred to be the most beautiful in the world ; and, moreover, he 
does justice to her exquisite feeling for landscape seen in the utmost 
simplicity — for she was not always drawing children. But when 
she did, she loved the landscape setting almost, if not quite, as much 
as the little people whom she sent to play in it. 

In speaking of Kate Greenaway as a ' great ' artist, we do not, of 

From 1 Pencil Sketch in tht poueuion of Lidy Pontifex. 

course, mean that she was technically accomplished in the sense or 
degree that a great picture-painter or a sculptor may be. Her 
figure-drawing was by no means always impeccable ; and the lact 
of the design and composition being generally 'right ' arose, we 
imagine, as much from intuition as from the result of scholarly 
training. And that is the chief thing. As he grows older, even the 
artist who is primarily technician and purist is apt to ask, 'What 
does technical excellence matter so long as the gist of the thing is 
there ? Is not that a finer thing which convinces us from the 


instinct of the painter than that which satisfies us from his know- 
ledge of it ? ' Yet Kate could draw an eye or the outline of a 
lace with unsurpassable skill : firmness and a sense of beauty were 
among her leading virtues. The painter with whom she had 
most affinity was perhaps Mr. G. D. Leslie, for her period and 
treatment are not unlike. Her sense of humour is allied to that 
of Stacy Marks ; and her sentiment to that of Fred Walker. 
Yet she was wholly personal (as will be shown later on when the 
details of her art come to be discussed), and full of independence, 
courage, and fixity of purpose. And just as G. F. Watts 
in his portraits of men and women invariably sought out the 
finest and most noble quality in his constant search for beauty in 
the sitter, not only in features but in character, so did Kate 
Greenaway in her quiet little drawings show us all that was sweet 
and pleasant and charming in children's lives of days gone by 
in country-side and village, and left out alt that was ugly, wrong, 
or bad. 

The life and progress of the fascinating artist lie here before 
the reader, with their quaint beginning and logical development. 

Book-pUte duigncd for Lidy Victoria Herbert. 





Kate Grrenaway was born at i, Cavendish 
Street, Hoxton, on the 17th day of March 1846. 
She was the daughter of John Grecnaway and of 
his wife, Elizabeth Jones. John Greenaway was 
a prominent wood-engraver and draughtsman, 
whose worlc is to be found in the early volumes 
of the Illustrated London News and Punchy and 
in the leading magazines and books 
of the day. His paternal grandfather 
was also the forebear of the artist, 
Mr. Franlc Dadd, R.I., whose brother 
(^ ^ married Kate's sister. 

/ The family consisted of ( i ) Eliza- 

% beth Mary (' Lizzie '), afterwards Mrs. 

( Frank Coxall, born in 1841 ; (2) 

„ , „ ,. Catherine ('Kate'), born in 1846; 

On * LeltCT to Ruikin. / \ r n i_ ilt7 r\ e 

(3) trances Rebecca ('l-anny ), after- 
wards Mrs. Edward Martin Dadd, born in 1850 ; and (4) Alfred 
John, born in 1852. It was the intention of the parents that 
the second child should bear the name of Kate, but by a blunder 
Catherine was substituted. Kate she called herself all her life, 
and so entirely was Catherine dropped that she always had to be 
reminded of her real name before she put her signature to any 
document in which strict accuracy was required. 

Kate's early life was, in the general acceptance of the term, 
uneventful Unimportant, childhood never is ; but what is import- 
ant in it is generally hard to come at. The reason is that we are 

Early Years 

nrcly able to recall the trivial yet very material events which 
make up the sum of child -experience ^ and the biographer is 
commonly left to ferret out the more salient points of the little 
one's surroundings, and dress out his own conjectures of the 
efFect they may have exercised upon the subject of his memoir. 
In the case of Kate Greenaway we are in a better position, 
for there are in existence certain records from the pen of the 
artist herself, candid and direct, and as particular in detail 
as if they had been studied, as it were, with her eye at the 
microscope of memory. These records, however, are not the 
best that could be desired, either in kind or in form, so that their 
proper presentation is not without some difficulty. 

A few years before her death Miss Greenaway conceived the 
idea of writing the autobiography of her childhood. This she 
did not live to accomplish, nor did she succeed in producing what 
can properly be called a complete rough draft of her nursery days. 
What she left behind is the long detailed record of undigested 
recollections and sensations as she recalled them, marked by 
discursiveness and lacking in literary form. In the desire to 
render acceptable such of them as are here reproduced, we have 
deemed it wise to substitute, in the main, the third for the first 
person singular. 

No apology need be offered for dwelling upon the trifling 
personal detaik with which character is built up, more particularly 
when they are revealed by a searching observation reinforced by an 
unusually retentive memory. These things come to be of peculiar 
interest and, combining to form a study of child-life, may be said 
to possess real value and importance. A certain lack of sequence 
and cohesion may be apparent in the record of these early days ; 
but the events happened and the impressions were created, and 
from them there arose the Kate Greenaway who was destined to 
be beloved of two continents. The reader is therefore prepared, so 
far as the early years are concerned, for a cumulative effect rather 
than for a rigidly consecutive narrative. 

Kate's own ideas on the relative merits of biography and 
autobiography may be gathered from the following quotations from 
letters written to her friend. Miss Violet Dickinson, in 1897 • — 

What an interesting thing nearly every one's life would be if they 
could put it all down ; but it is only the horrid ones who will, like 
Marie BashkirtsefF or Rousseau — but if nice people could tell all their 
mind it would be charming. Did you ever read Goethe's Li/e — the 

9 2 

Kate Greenaway 

autobiography ? All the early part is so charming, — only there you feel 
he also was very heartless. And he was, but it is so charmingly told. 
Sometimes frankness is curious. I once met a young man who told 
me he was a coward and a liar — and it turned out he toas^ to my great 
surprise. It isn't often people know themselves so truthfully, or, if 
they know, they don't say. 

And again : 

y I am longing to read the Tennyson Life — shall send for it next 

week. I don't know, I'm sure, who is best to write a Life — outsiders 
don't know half what any one is like, and relations often get a 
wrong idea of you because they kre cross at little points in your 
character that annoy them. I feel an autobiography or diary is best. 
A person must reveal himself most in that. 

Kate was a precocious child. We have it on her authority 
that when she was eight months old she could walk alone, and 
while still an infant criticised the pronunciation of her sister 
Lizzie, who was five years her senior. She was not a year old 
when she was taken by her mother to visit her great-aunt, Mrs. 
Wise, the wife of a farmer at Rolleston, a village some five miles 
from Newark and fourteen from Nottingham. And Aunt 
Aldridge, her mother's sister, lived in the neighbourhood, at a 
lonely form, weirdly called the ' Odd House.' 

At Aunt Wise's house Mrs. Greenaway was taken seriously 
ill, and it was found necessary to put little Kate out to nurse. 
Living on a small cottage ^rm in Rolleston ^ was an old servant 
of Mrs. Wise's, Mary Barnsdale, at this time married to Thomas 
Chappell. With the Chappells lived Mary's sister, Ann. It was 
of this household that Kate became an important member, and 
forthwith to the child Mary became 'Mamam,' her husband 
' Dadad,' and her sister Ann ' Nanan.' This was as soon as she 
found her tongue. Among her earliest recollections came a hay- 
field named the * Greet Close,' where Ann carried Kate on one 
arm, and on the other a basket of bread and butter and cups, and, 
somehow, on a third, a can of steaming tea for the thirsty haymakers 
— which tells us the season of the year. Kate was sure that she had 
now arrived at the age of two, and for the rest of her life she vividly 
remembered the beauty of the afterpoon, the look of the sun, the 
smell of the tea, the perfume of the hay, and the great feeling of 

^ The drawings of the cheese-presi, the pump, and the fireplace in the kitchen of 
the cottage, u well as of the croft at Rolleston, here reproduced, were executed by Kate 
Greenaway while she was still a girl. 



An early drawing by Kate Greetunvay. 
(See No. i on Sketch Plan.) 

Early Years 

Happiness — the joy and the love of it — from her royal perch on 
Ann's strong arm. 

Another remembrance is of piclcing up tiny pebbles and 
putting them into a little round purple-and-whitc basket with 
another little girl named Dollie, who was engaged in the same 
serious business with another purple-and-white basket. Kate was 

Sketch or the Kitcnin at Rolluton. 
Showing the diipotitioa of tlie ipTtiiwDt pictured in the three colonred iliuitrilioat. 

dressed in a pink cotton frock and a white sun-bonnet — she would 
have sworn, she tells us, to the colours half a century later, under 
cross-examination if necessary. Indeed, she seems never to have ; 
forgotten the colour of anything her whole life long. 

But great as was the joy of tiny pebbles and of playmate 
Dollie, far greater was the happiness inspired by the flowers, with 
which she struck up friendships that were to last to her life's end. 
There was the snapdragon, which opened and shut its mouth as 
she chose to pinch it. This she ' loved ' ; but the pink moss rose, 

Kate Greenaway 


which grew by the dairy window, she * revered.* It grew with 
the gooseberry bushes, the plum tree, and the laburnum in the 
little three-cornered garden near the road. Then there was a 
purple phlox on one side of the gate and a Michaelmas daisy on 
the other side ; and outside the gate (she put this into a picture 
years afterwards, and to her indignation was laughed at for it) 
grew a wallflower. But though she loved and revered the garden 
flowers, they were never to her what those were which grew of 
their own free will in the fields and hedgerows. There were the 
large blue craneVbill, the purple vetch, and the toad-flax, and, above 
all others, the willow-herb, which to her sisters and brother was 

/ ' Kitty's flower.' These were the prime favourites, and, in the 
absence of the most elementary botanical knowledge, had to be 
christened 'my little blue flower,' * yellow dragon's- mouth,' or 
what not, for private use. 

Farther away were the more rarely visited fairylands of the 
Cornfield and the Flower-bank, only to be reached under Ann's 
grown-up escort when she was free of a Sunday. In the first, 
where the corn-stalks grew far above Kate's head, the enchanted 
vistas reached, so it seemed, away for ever and ever, and the 
yellow avenues were brilliant with pimpernels, pansies, blue and 
white veronica, tiny purple geraniums, the great crimson poppies, 
and the persistent bindweed, which twined up the stems of the 
wheat. But the Flower-bank was better still — sl high raised path- 
way which sloped down to a field on the one side and what was 
to her a dark, deep stream on the other, with here and there 
stiles to be climbed and delightfully terrifying foot-planks to be 
crossed ; then through a deep, shady plantation until a mill was 
reached, and right on, if one went far enough, to the river Trent 
itself. Then, in the plantation grew the large blue crane's-bill, 
the purple vetch, and the large white convolvulus, which with 
the vetch trailed over the sloe and blackberry bushes. And up 
in the trees cooed wood-pigeons ; and, in the autumn, all sorts 
of birds were gathered in view of flights to warmer lands. 
Round the mill wound the little river Greet, with forget-me-nots 
on the banks and overhanging apple trees, from which apples, 
felling off in the autumn, would float away and carry with them 

I Kate's baby thoughts on and on to the sea, and so to the new and 
wonderful world of the imagination which was to be her heritage, 
and which she was to share with children yet unborn. 

One thing only marred her pleasure, one note of melancholy 



Early drwufings by Katt Greenaway, 
(Se« Nos. 3 and 3 on Sketch Plan ) 

Early Years 

discord on these Sunday morning walks — the church bells, 
which from earliest childhood spoke to her of an undefined 
mournfulness lying somewhere in the' background of the world 
of life and beauty. She had heard them tolled for the passing of 
some poor soul, and ever after that they took the joy out of her 
day for all their assumption of a gayer mood. 

As Kate grew a year or two older, another prime entertain- 
ment was to rise at five o'clock in the morning and go off with 
Ann to the 'Plot' to fetch the cows. The 'Plot' was a great 
meadow to which all the Rolleston cottagers had the right to 
send their cows, the number of beasts being proportioned to the 
size of the cottage. The Chappells sent three, Sally, Strawberry, 
and Sarah Midgeley, and the sight was to see Ann running after 
them — Ann, tall and angular, running with great strides and 
flourishing a large stick which she brought down with sounding 
thwacks on to tough hides and protruding blade-bones. The 
cows were evil-minded and they resented uncalled-for interference 
with their morning meal. They were as determined to stay in 
the plot as Ann was to get them out of it ; sometimes, indeed, 
so determined were they on defiance that they would wander into 
the 'High Plot,' and then their disgrace and punishment were 
terrible to behold. 'Get along in, ye bad 'uns,' she would cry 
in her shrill voice, and down the stick would come ; until at last, 
hustling each other from where the blows fell thickest, and 
running their horns into each other's skin, while little Kate grew 
sick with terror, they were at last marshalled to the milking- 
place, and peace would reign once more. 

After a year or two at Rolleston, Kate was taken back to 
London, to Napier Street, Hoxton, whither the Greenaways had 
now moved. 

Up to this time the family had been in easy circumstances, 
but trouble was now to come. Mr. Greenaway had been 
engaged to engrave the illustrations for a large and costly book. 
The publishers failed and he never received a penny of his money. 
There was nothing for it but to make the best of a bad job, and 
Mrs. Greenaway was not one to be daunted. The family was removed 
to Upper Street, Islington, opposite the church, and while her 
husband sought further work, Mrs. Greenaway courageously set 
up shop and sold lace, children's dresses, and all kinds of rancy 
goods. The venture was successful, and the children found 
nothing to complain of in their new surroundings. 


Kate Greenaway 

Fashioned out of the middle portion of an old Elizabethan 
country house, the wings being likewise converted into two other 
small shops and the rooms apportioned accordingly, the new home 
was a very castle of romance. To the Greenaways fell the grand 
staircase and the first floor, with rambling passages, several unused 
rooms, too dilapidated for habitation, and weird, mysterious pass- 
ages which led dreadfully to nowhere. At the back was a large 
garden, the use of which was held in common by the three families. 

It was in Islington that Kate had her first taste of systematic 
education, from Mrs. Allaman, who kept an infants' school — an 
old lady with a large frilly cap, a frilly muslin dress, a scarf over 
her shoulders, and a long apron. Here she learned her letters and 
how to use needle and cotton. On the whole, she liked the old 
lady, but all her life long she could feel the sounding tap of her 
admonitory thimble on her infant head in acknowledgment of 
a needle negligently and painfully presented point first to the 
mistress's finger. 

Of all her relations Kate loved best her mother's mother, 
^Grandma Jones,' who lived in Britannia Street, Hoxton, in a house 
of her own. She was a bright, clever old lady, with a sharp 
tongue, fond of shrewd sayings and full of interesting information. 
Not her least charm was that she always had Coburg loaves for 
tea, beautiful toast, raspberry jam, and honey. Of Grandfather 
Jones, Kate writes : 

My mother's father was a Welshman. She used to tell us he 
belonged to people who were called Bulldicks because they were big 
men and great fighters, and that they used as children to slide down the 
mountains on three-legged milking-stools. He was very bad-tempered 
and made them often very unhappy, but he was evidently intellectual 
and fond of reading. My mother has often told me how he read Sir 
Charles Graniison^ and she used to stand behind his chair unknown 
to him and read it also over his shoulder. 

On her twentieth birthday he insisted upon giving a party, because 
he said he should die before she was twenty-one, and he did. 

Other relations of whom the little Greenaways saw a great 
deal were their aunts Rebecca, a bookbinder, and Mary, a wood- 
engraver. Aunt Mary was a great favourite because she always 
had bread and treacle or bread and butter and sugar for tea. But 
on Sundays there were oranges and apples, cakes and sweets, with 
The PilgrinCs Progress^ John Gilpin^ or Why the Sea became Salt 

Early Years 

to follow. Especially from Aunt Mary, later on, did Kate derive 
her deep love of poetry. 

It was in Aunt Mary's company that a certain disastrous walk 
was taken up the City Road one enchanted night, dimly lighted 
by the stars overhead and by the red and blue chemist's-bottles in the 
windows below. Sister Fanny was of the company, and both the 
little girls, overcome by the splendours of the scene, tumbled ofF 
the curb into the road, and arrived home muddy and disgraced. 
And the whole was the more terrible because Fanny was resplendent 
— (for there seems no limit to Kate's sartorial recollection) — Fanny 
was resplendent in ' a dark-red pelerine, with three rows of narrow 
velvet round the cape, and a drab plush bonnet, trimmed with 
chenille and red strings ; and Kate in a dark-red frock, a bonnet 
like her sister's, and a little grey cloth jacket scalloped at the 
edge, also bound and trimmed with red velvet. And each had 
a grey squirrel mufF.' From which particularity we see how 
the artist in posse was already storing her mind with matters 
which were to be of use to her in garment-designing in time 
to come. As we proceed, we shall more and more realise how 
important a &ctor in her artistic development was this early 
capacity for accurate observation, ravenously seizing upon and 
making her own the infinitely little details of her childish experi- 
ences. It was the vividness of these playtime impressions that 
made their recall possible at such period as her life-work had need 
of them. 

There was another aunt, Mrs. Thorne, Mrs. Greenaway's 
youngest sister, who lived at Water Lane, near the River Lee, of 
whom Kate by no means approved, for hers was an extremely ill- 
ordered household. But though visits there left a very disagree- 
able impression, they were big with something of delightful 
import which had its development many years later. It illustrates 
well how impressions absorbed in early years coloured the artist's 
performances in &r-ofF days to come. 

Aunt Thome's garden was overrun with a glory of innumer- 
able nasturtiums. They were, in Kate's own words, the * gaudiest 
of the gaudy,' and she ^ loved and admired them beyond words.' 
She was possessed by their splendour, and finally got them visualised 
in a quite wonderful way in a dream with a background of bright 
blue palings. For many a long year she bore the entrancing 
vision about with her, and then gave it permanent expression for 
the delight of thousands in her picture of Cinderella fetching her 


Kate Greenaway 

pumpkin. The visits, therefore, which were so distasteful at the 
time were neither without result nor unimportant. Moreover, the 
nasturtium dream brought to Kate, who as a child was a great 
dreamer, a new experience. Two or three years before she had 
dreamed that she had come to a cottage in a wood and knocked at 
the door. It was opened by an old woman whose face suddenly 
assumed an expression so awful that she awoke frightened and 
trembling. In the nasturtium dream there was just such another 
cottage with just such another door, at which, after she had 
passed through the garden and had absorbed its beauties, she also 
knocked. Then in a moment she knew that the door would be 
opened by the old woman with the horrible face of three years 
before. A deadly faintness seized upon her and she again wolce in 
horror. This was her first experience of a dream within a dream. 

^ Many of her dreams were recurrent and are common enough 

to childhood. One constantly repeated vision, she tells us, brought 
to her her dearly loved father. She would dream that, gazing into 
his face, the countenance would change and be, not his face, but 
another's. With this change would come an agonv of misery, 
and she would desperately tear off the false face, only to be con- 
fronted by another and yet another, but never his own, until in 
mercy she awoke and knew that the terrible mutations were as 
unreal as they were terrifying. Again, an often-repeated dream 
was of falling through water, down, down past the green weeds, 
slowly, slowly, sink, sink, with a sort of rhythmic pause and start 
until the bottom was reached, and she gently awoke. Or some- 
\ thing would be in pursuit, and just as capture was imminent, she 

^ would feel that she could fly. Up, up she would soar, then float 
down over a steep staircase, out at one window and in at another, 
until she found herself lying in an ecstasy awake and wanting the 
delightful experience all over again. 

Kate's childhood seems, on the whole, to have been happy 
enough, not so much in consequence of her surroundings as of her 
temperament. Writing to Miss Violet Dickinson forty years later, 
she says : 

Did you ever know Mr. Augustus Hare ? I find his book so very 
interesting. I once was at the Locker-Lampsons' when he was there. 
I did not feel very sympathetic then, but now I read his Life, I feel so 
very sorry for the poor unhappy little child he was. And the horrid 
stern people he lived with — it makes me feel I don't know what, as I 
read. . . . 


Early Years 

I can't think how people can be hard and cruel to children. They 
appeal to you so deeply. I had such a very happy time when I was a 
child, and, curiously, was so very much happier then than my brother 
and sister, with exactly the same surroundings. I suppose my imaginary 
life made me one long continuous joy — filled everything with a strange 
wonder and beauty. Living in that childish wonder is a most beauti- 
ful feeling — I can so well remember it. There was always something 
more — behind and beyond everything — to me ; the golden spectacles 
were very very big. 

Late on in life, too, she used to compare the ^ don't-much-care ' 
attitude of the modern child with the wildness of her own enjoy* 
ments and the bitterness of her own disappointments. It was a 
complaint with her that the little girl in Jane Taylor's poems who 
cried because it rained and she couldn't go for a drive was a child 
of the past, whereas her modern representative, surfeited with 
treats, takes her disappointments stoically, or at least apathetically, 
and never sheds a tear. There may have been some grounds for 
the comparison, but probably what she missed in the modern child 
was the latent artistic emotion with which she had been endowed 
at birth. For this power of joyful realisation had its necessary 
converse : the very intensity of anticipation which made it necessary 
for treats to be concealea from her until the morning of their 
occurrence, and her wild abandonment to pleasure when it came, 
found its counterpart in fits of depression and gloom, such as do 
not come to the humdrum and unimaginative child. At such 
times she would make up her mind not only to be not happy, but 
to be aggressively gloomy. One day, indeed, she went so ^r as 
to announce at breakfast that she did not intend to smile the whole 
day long, nor indeed to utter a single word. The announcement 
was received with derisive laughter, for the others knew it was 
only Kate's way, and that at the afternoon party which was 
imminent she would be the gayest of the gay. And the worst of 
it was that Kate knew in her heart of heart that they were right, 
and that when the time came she would laugh and be happy with 
the rest. 

One of these well-remembered gatherings was the B.'s party, 
an annual affair, held in a long rambling furniture shop, full of 
dark corners, weird shadows, and general mystery. Here it was, 
year in, year out, that they met the little Miss C.'s, who, full of 
their own importance, seeing that they were much better dressed 
than the other children, annually sat silent, sulky, and superior. 

17 3 


Kate Greenaway 

Here too disported himself the debonnaire Johnny B., a very wild 
boy, who generally managed to break some furniture, and had such 
dexterity in the lancers that he could shed his shoes as he went 
round and get into them again without stopping. Fate claimed 
him for the Navy, and he passed out of their Uves in a midship- 
man's uniform. 

Another was Mr. D.'s annual Twelfth Night party, notable for 
its very big Twelfth cake, its drawing for king and queen, and its 
magic -lantern. Kate never became queen, but at Miss W.'s 
party, quite the most important of the year, she once had her 
triumph. According to her own account — 

It was some way off ; even now I remember the shivery feeling of 
the drive in the cab, and the fear that always beset me that we might 
have gone on the wrong day. There was Miss W., Miss W.'s brother, 
Miss W.'s aunt, and Miss W.'s mother. Miss W. taught my eldest 
sister Lizzie music, and all her pupils were invited once a year to this 
party, their sisters also, but no brothers — at least, two brothers only I 
ever remember seeing there. 

There was one big tomboy sort of girl, with beautiful blue eyes 

«^ and tangled fair hair, who used to have a grown- 
up brother come to fetch her ; this girl I loved 
and admired intensely, and never spoke to her in 
my life. She had merry ways and laughing looks, 
and I adored her. The other brother was the 
cause of my one triumph. One party night there 
was just this little boy — among all the girls — and tea 
over and dancing about to begin, the boy was led to the 
middle of the room by Miss W., and told out of all 
the girls to choose his partner for the first dance. He 
took his time — looked slowly round the room, weigh- 
ing this and that, and, to my utter discomfiture and 
dire consternation, he chose me — moment of unwished 
triumph — ^short-lived also, for he didn't remain faithful, 
but fell a victim later on to the wiles of some of the 
young ladies nearly twice his age. I remember I was 
much relieved, became fast and devoted friends with a 
nice little girl, passed an agreeable evening, and remem- 
ber at supper-time surreptitiously dropping an applc- 
tart I loathed behind a fender. I daresay it was good 
really, but it was tart with the tartness of lemonade 
and raspberryade, two things I disliked at that time. 

But delightful as were these private parties, they were as 


On a Letter to 

Early Years 

nothing compared with the rarer visits to the theatres or other 
places of entertainment. On these never-to-be-forgotten occasions 
Mr. Greenaway, whose work was chiefly done away from home, 
would turn up quite unexpectedly at tea-time, would pretend that 
he had come home for nothing in particular, and would playfully 
keep the eager children on the tenterhooks of expectation. But 
it was only part of a playful fraud, for they knew well that nothing 
would tempt him early from his work but some thrilling treat in 
store for them. What delight there was, when finally the secret 
of their destination leaked out, to scramble over tea, hurry on best 
clothes, thread dark streets, and finally blink their way into the 
magic circle of the blazing theatre itself, with its fascinating 
smell of oranges and gas, the scraping of violins, and all the 
mysterious titillations of the expectant senses. 

Kate's first taste of the theatre was Henry the Fifth at Sadler's 
Wells. Then came the Midsummer Night^s Dream^ Henry the 
Fourth^ The Lady of Lyons^ and (at Astley's) Richard the Third, 
It was at Astley's, too, when she must have been several years 
older, that she saw a piece called ^Die Relief of LucknoWy in which 
General Havelock rode on to the stage on a beautiful white horse. 
This made so great an impression upon her that she burst into 
tears, whereupon her sister said she was ^ a silly ' and her father 
said she wasn't ; for the awful tragedy of the Indian Mutiny was 
at that time filling everybody's thoughts, and with the details of 
it she had grown terribly familiar by poring over the pictures in 
the Illustrated London News. Moreover, her imagination had 
stimulated her pencil at this time to make many dramatic drawings 
of ladies, nurses, and children being pursued by bloodthirsty 
sepoys ; but the pencil was of slate, and consequently these 
earliest known drawings were wiped out almost as soon as 

Hardly less enchanting than these theatrical experiences were 
the days which broueht them tickets for the Polytechnic or took 
them to the Crystal Palace. The former was not yet the haunt 
of Pepper's Ghost, or of Liotard (in wax) on his trapeze, but it 
was quite enchanting enough with its Diving Bell and the 
goggle-eyed Diver, who tapped the pennies, retrieved from the 
green depths of his tank, on the sounding brass of his helmet. 
The Palace, with its Alhambra Courts, its great fountains, its 
tall water towers, and other innumerable delights, was an Abode 
of Bliss. Those were days in which, to her memory, the sun 


Kate Greenaway 

seemed always to be shining, the slcy always to be blue, and the 
hours never long enough Tor all their joyous possibilities. And, 
though the time had to come when the sun sometimes Ibrgot to 
shine, and, when it did, threw longer shadows before her, Kate 
Greenaway never wholly forgot, but kept these joys alive in her 
heart for the enchantment of others. 

WINTER, 1892. 
Ftom a wattT'cdour drawing in the possession of Stuart M, Samuei^ Esq., M.P. 





When Kate was midway between five and 
six years of age, the family moved into a 
larger house and shop nearer to Highbury* 
Here they fairly established themselves, and 
here was the home of her recollection when 
she looked back on her childhood. 

Then a new world opened to her, a new, 
boundless world, unfenced about with material 
walls, illimitable, inexhaustible — the world of 
books and measureless imagination. Of a 
sudden, to her mother's and her own great 
happiness and surprise, she found that she 
could read ! First came the two-a-penny 
Fairy Tales in coloured paper covers. There 
were larger ones for a penny, but the half- 
penny ones were better. Pepper and Salt was 
one of the most enjoyably and delightfully 

On a Letter to Rutkin. afflictive. Who that has read it in tender 

years can ever forget how the Cruel Stepmother 

kills Salt and buries her, or the mysterious voice that chanted — 

' She drank my blood and picked my bones, 
And buried me under the marble stones.* 

Kate never forgot them, as, indeed, she never forgot Bluebeard^ 
or Toads and Diamonds^ or Beauty and the Beast. But, although 
she never forgot them, she never remembered them too well. 
The delicious excitement could always be renewed. A hundred 
times she had heard Bluebeard call in his awful voice to Fatima 
to come down. A hundred times Sister Ann had cried her shrill 
reply : ^ I see the sky that looks blue and the grass that looks 
green.' A hundred times the little cloud of dust had risen, and 



Kate Greenaway 

the brothers had come in the nick of time to save her. But, at 
the hundredth reading, Kate's fear was as acute and her relief 
as great as at the first. 

Other favourites were Frank^ Harry^ and Lucy^ The Purple 
Jar^ The Cherry Orchard^ Julianna Oakley^ The Child* s Companion^ 
and Line upon Line. 

Then there were the verses of Jane and Ann Taylor, rendered 
especially delightful by Mrs. Greenaway's dramatic rendering at 
bedtime — ^ Down in a green and shady bed,' ' Down in a ditch, 
poor donkey,' and * Miss Fanny was fond of a little canary.' The 
last harrowed Kate with an intense sorrow, as indeed it did to the 
day when she set to work to illustrate it for the joy and delight 
of a later generation in a volume dedicated to Godfrey, Dorothy, 
Oliver, and Maud Locker.^ Others which she could never hear 
too often were * Greedy Richard,' ' Careless Matilda,' * George 
and the Chimney -Sweep,' 'Dirty Jim,' * Little Ann and her 
Mother,' and ' The Cow and the Ass.* 

' Take a seat,' said the Cow, gently waving her hand. 
* By no means, dear Madam,' said he, ' while you stand.' 
Then showing politeness, as Gentlemen must. 
The Ass held his tongue that the Cow might speak first. 

But one book there was which, whilst it delighted the rest, 
depressed little Kate horribly and miserably, though she would 
never confess it, partly out of loyalty to her father and partly from 
shame at what she felt might be regarded as a foolish weakness. 
This was a book of rhymes for which Mr. Greenaway had en- 

f raved the wood-blocks. It contained the * Courtship, Life, and 
)eath of Cock Robin and Jenny Wren ' ; * The Three Bears ' ; 
' The Little Man and the Little Maid ' ; * The Wonderful 
History of Cocky Locky, Henny Penney, and Goosey Poosey ' ; 
and a story of a Goose and her three daughters. Gobble, Goosey, 
and Ganderee, which began 

A Goose who was once at the point of death 
She called her three daughters near. 

These seemed to her tender heart cruel and terrible tales, and 
their funny names and affectation of gaiety in no way palliated 
their brutality or comforted their little reader. 

Other books over which she would pore were the Plays of 
Shakespeare, illustrated by Kenny Meadows, all of which she 

^ Little Attn andotAtr Poems^ by Jane and Ann Taylor, illustrated by Kate Greenaway, 
printed in colours by Edmund Evans. London : George Routledge & Sons, etc. (n.d.) 


childhood in Rolleston 

managed to read before she was many years older, two large 
volumes oF the Illuminated Magaxint^ an odd volume of the Illui- 
trated Family Jaumal, and a monster scrap-book of coloured and 
uncolourcd prints, collected probably by her father m the course 
of his occupation. One dreadful prmt there was among the 
last which had for her a horrible fascination. It was the 
etched plate by George Cruikshank from Ainsworth's Tawtr of 
London- — ' The Burning of Edward Underbill on Tower Green,' 
where, according to Reid's rather lurid description, we see 'the 
victim losing self-command in his horrible sufferings, and in agony 
plunging his hands into his flesh.* It is easy to realise the eSect 
of such a scene upon a child so sensitive that she could not 
bear to dwell even upon the sufferings of Gobble, Goosey, and 
Ganderee. And yet, terrible as it was, she would not, if she 
could, escape from its dreadful attractiveness. Into the victim's 
Stricken face she would gaze and gaze until she trembled with 
horror. Then seizing it and shutting her eyes, she would frantic- 
ally hide it away in a cupboard tilled with copies of the Illustrated 
London Newi, slipping it 
blindly in amongst the reams 
of printed paper, half hoping 
never to sec it again. Then 
would ptass an interval of 
relief, only to be followed as 
certainly as night follows 
day by an irresistible craving 
to look upon the awful thing 
again, a frantic search, an- 
other horrified glance, and 
again a hasty but not a final 

But such experiences 
were few and detached. The 
prevailing notes of her life, 
she insists, were wonder and 
delight. How limitless, for ' 
example, were the pleasures 
to be got out of the streets, 

where, with her younger sis- ^^ , ^^.^ ,„ ^^^^^ 

ter l<anny, she was allowed 

to roam, so long as she kept away from the forbidden I 

Kate Greenaway 

which lay beyond Wellington Street on the one hand and Barnsbury 
Street on the other. All else was out of bounds. Of course, like 
all imaginative children, they played at the fascinating game of 
^ Pretence,' merging their individualities in those of erand and 
mysterious children whom, nurse-guarded, as the little Green- 
aways were not, they met on their daily walks. Two there were 
in particular who, they made believe, had their home in the sky, 
descending to earth daily for their morning's exercise. And surely 
there was nothing incongruous or surprising in the *&ct that these 
celestial visitors should choose Islington as the most eligible part of 
this best of all possible worlds for the purpose. Where else could 
they see such fascinating shops and such rustling, perfumed ladies ? 

* Where else such a Fancy Emporium into which you could gaze 
and gaze for ever (until driven away by the owner) at the picture- 
books and puzzle-maps in the glass case at the side of the door- 
way i ' And when chased away from there, where such another 
print-shop with its coloured engravings after John Martin — 

* Belshazzar's Feast,' 'The Great Day of Wrath,' and 'The 
Plains of Heaven ' ? — pictures which Kate never wearied of, and 
which from their wealth of detail could never be wholly mastered. 

If variety of entertainment were wanted, was there ever such a 
diversity of side-shows as the corner of Wellington Street, by great 
good fortune just within bounds ? — by good fortune, because 
Kate and her sister, being out on parole, never dreamed of 
straying beyond the permissible limit. Here one day would be 
found a sailor with one leg real and the other of wood, appealing 
to the sympathetic passer-by by means of a large and lurid picture 
of a ship overturned by a whale. Another day the pitch would 
be taken by an impostor of the same feather who set forth an 
equally lurid representation of a battle on ship-board^ with a 
cannon-ball exploding in the midst of a crowded deck and dealing 
around all manner of grisly and impossible hurts. Impostor he 
must have been, for no brave man ever hit out so viciously as he 
did with his crutch at well-behaved children, directly he found 
that no grown-up people were looking, just because he knew that 
there were no coppers coming to him from that quarter. Again, 
there was the Punch and Judy show. Hither at the first sound 
of the drum and Punch's weird screech the little Greenaways* 
feet would be set incontinently running. Arrived, with breath- 
less interest they would follow the familiar tragedy, thrill at the 
ghost, pity the poor trembling protagonist, and follow the drama 


Childhood in RoUeston 

responsively to its close. But there were times when their 
eagerness was cruelly balked. As the drama drew to its most 
thrilling moment, there would fall a great despair upon the little 
onlookers. Of a sudden the play would stop, and the stage 
manager, stepping forward, would declare that the audience was 
not a paying one, and that unless a certain amount of hard cash 
were forthcoming, he couldn't afford to go on. Now the little 
Greenaways never had any money, so they were helpless in the 
matter, and, if the rest of the audience happened to be in the 
same plight, as was not rarely the case, there was an abrupt 
termination to the play for that day, and Punch struck his camp 
for some less impecunious sphere. 

But the corner was full of possibilities. As likely as not the 
faithless Punch would be replaced in almost no time by the hardly 
less fascinating Fantoccini — of which Mother Goose with her 
milk-pails from which jumped little children, the skeleton that 
came to bits and joined itself together again, and the four little 
figures dancing a quadrille dwelt longest in the memory. Indeed, 
rarely was this wonderful corner unoccupied, for, lacking the more 
regular entertainers, there was always the chance of tumblers, or 
tight-rope dancers, or a Happy Family. The last-named, by the 
way, not infrequently belied its description, and had to be hastily 
curtained for the saving of its impresario's reputation. Such 
contretemps^ it need hardly be said, met with hearty appreciation 
from the audience, for children, like their elders, bear with more 
than equanimity the misfortunes of others. Again, there were 
dancing dolls which knocked each other about in very lively 
fashion, a variety of peep-shows, and a delightful organ with a 
scene of great ingenuity on the top, in which an executioner cut 
off the head of a queen about once every minute, to the tune of 
the 'Marseillaise.' 

There was one dreadful day when there came something more 
than little Kate had bargained for. In place of the looked-for 
entertainment, there marched along a man dressed in skins, a 
modern edition of Solomon Eagle, who blew blasts out of a great 
brass trumpet and announced in a loud voice that the End of the 
World was at hand. The shock was a terrible one. For months 
Kate went about haunted by the gloomiest forebodings. Those 
gruesome pictures of Martin's in the print-seller's window assumed 
a new significance. She began to guess at what we call inexor- 
able fate, to catch a glimpse of destiny. Nor was this all. From 

25 4 

Kate Greenaway 

pondering, fearsomely, the world^s imminent destruction so con- 
vincingly announced, she came to trying, in a hopeless, childish 
fashion to hark back to the beginning of things. Driving herself 
almost frantic with terror at the thought of burning worlds afloat 
in space as dark as night, she would rack her brains as to what was 
behind it all, until she faced the blank black wall of nothingness, 
against which she was not the first to knock her poor little head. 
Then baffled and despairing she would run away, she says, seeking 
relief and forgetfulness wherever it might be found. 

Fortunately she had not a few distractions. There were her 
dolls, which ranged from the little giant ^Gauraca' (given to Kate 
for learning a piece of pianoforte music so entitled, then in 
vogue), so huge — more than a yard and a quarter long — that she 
could only be carried with legs trailing on the ground, to the 
little group of Dutch mannikins of which half-a-dozen could be 
grasped in one hand. By right of bulk Gauraca claimed pre- 
cedence. She wore the discarded clothes of brother John, the 
tucks in which had to be let down to make them big enough, 
and took full-sized babies' shoes. She was a wonder, not indeed 
altogether lovable ; rather was she of value as a stimulator of 
covetous feelings in others. Below Gauraca came dolls of all sorts 
and sizes, too many for enumeration, but all of importance, seeing 
that on their persons were performed those tentative experiments 
which were to colour the work of twenty years later. 

On these dolls Kate dilates at some length, and the gist of her 
record is this. Least in size though first in rank came the Rojral 
group, with Queen Victoria (who had cost a halfpenny) as its 
centre, supported by Prince Albert (also a halfpenny) appropriately 

Vavvv^ O^lM' i)a ^^W^iMo ]tx ftw<>/v> /Z<noL^ 

From a tJoater'Cchur drmoing in the possession oj Mrs, A' thur Severn, 

Childhood in RoUeston 

habited in a white gauze skirt trimmed with three rows of cerise 
satin, and, for further distinction and identification, a red ribbon 
tied across his shoulder and under his left arm. These garments 
could only be removed by an actual disintegration. The Royal 
circle was completed by the princes and princesses at a farthing 
apiece. Their dresses were made from the gauze bonnet linings 
just then going out of fashion, and such scraps of net and ribbon 
as had proved unsaleable. 

The little Greenaways were profoundly interested in the 
doings of the august personages who were their prototypes. They 
knew their names, ages, and birthdays as well as they knew each 
other's, and eagerly studied their likenesses in the Illustrated London 
News. On great occasions the children would be taken by Mr. 
Greenaway to peep in at the gates of Buckingham Palace itself, 
and Kate wished and wished with all her might that she might 
be driven through them, as an invited guest, in a Royal coach. 
Little did she dream that thirty years later would indeed find her 
an honoured visitor within the sacred precincts, entertained by the 
Princess Royal (then Crown Princess of Germany), and chatting 
on easy terms with the future ruler of the German Empire. It 
was only when she was actually driving between those gates, not 
exactly in a ^ Royal coach,' that the memory of her ardent wish sud- 
denly recurred to her, for she had never thought of it since ; and 
it fiUed her mind as she entered the Royal presence. Then it was 
she learned that, whilst she as a child had envied the lot of those 
within, the Princess as a child had envied the freedom of those 
without, and that a prison is none the less a prison because the 
bars are of gol({. Here also she had the privilege of meeting the 
Princess Helena (by that time Princess Christian), who doubtless 
would have been highly amused had she known how often the 
artless-looking little lady before her had boldly represented her 
in bygone days when ^pretending' in the wilds of Islington. 
How heartily, too, would she have laughed (nay, perhaps she may 
laugh still) at the picture of the farthing wooden effigy which an 
enthusiastic little loyalist had invested with her exalted personality 
in those fast-receding days. 

After the wooden dolls, with their crude and irremovable 
garments, came the far more human -looking effigies in china, 
which populated the cupboard in the little girls' bedroom. Their 
clothes were all exquisitely made by Kate, and were all removable. 
They took their walks abroad on the mantelpiece. Their hats 


Kate Greenaway 

were made of tiny straw-plaits trimmed with china ribbons and 
the fluffy down culled from feathers which had escaped from the 
pillows. They revelled in luxurious gardens made of fig boxes 
filled with sand collected on Sunday vnlks to Hampstead Heath, 
and planted with the tiniest of flowering plants, which often had 
to be replaced, as they would not thrive in the uncongenial soil. 
Furniture was hard to come by at a farthing a week, which was 
Kate's income at this time, but twenty-four weeks' saving got a 
sixpenny piano, for the sake of which the sacrifice of other 
expensive pleasures during that period was considered not unreason- 
able. Once indeed Aunt Aldridge came to town and presented 
the dolls with a work-table, but so great a piece of good fortune 
never again befell. 

Later there were Lowther Arcadian dolls at fourpence half- 
penny apiece, but these like the royal group were short-lived and 
ephemeral. They passed away so rapidly that memory lost their 
identity, whereas ' Doll Lizzie,' made of brown oak, legless, arm- 
less, and devoid of paint, and ^ One-eye,' equally devoid of paint, 
half- blind, and retaining but one rag arm, were seemingly im- 
mortal, and were more tenderly loved than all, notwithstanding the 
fact that their only clothing consisted of old rags tied round them 
with string. These remnants went to bed with the little girls, 
and enjoyed other privileges not accorded to the parvenues. 

London, as we see, was now the home of Kate Greenaway, 
but fortunately there was Rolleston and the country always in 
the background as a beautiful and fascinating possibility ; and it 
was rarely that a year passed without a visit, though now and 
again not enough money had been saved to make the thing feasible. 

In Kate's own simple words : 

In these early days all the farm things were of endless interest to 
me. I used to go about in the cart with Dadad, and Nancy to draw 
us. He thought wonderful things of Nancy — no pony was like her. 
I shared his feeling, and when my Uncle Aldridge used to inquire how 
the high-mettled racer was, I felt deep indignation. There was no 
weight Nancy couldn't draw — no speed she could not go at (if she 
liked), but there was no need on ordinary occasions — there was plenty 
of time. The cart had no springs — it bumped you about ; that didn't 
matter to me. Sometimes we used to go to Southwell to get malt. This 
was a small quiet town two and a half miles off*, and the way to drive was 
through green lane-like roads. It took a good while. Nancy went at a 
slow jog-trot ; I didn't mind how long it took, it was all a pleasure. 


Childhood in RoUeston 

There was an old cathedral called Southwell Minster, with quaint old 
carvings in stone and old stained-glass windows which they said were 
broken and buried in Cromwell's time so as to save them. Southwell 
now possesses a Bishop, but it did not then. Then we used to go to 
the * Plot,' where all the cottage people had land, to get potatoes or 
turnips. At hay-time and harvest the cart had one of those framework 
things fitted on, and Nancy fetched corn or hay. 

I had a tiny hayfork, a little kit to carry milk in, and a little wash- 
ing-tub, all exactly like big real ones, only small. I washed dolls' 
things in the tub, and made hay with the fork, and carried milk in the kit. 

Then, besides Nancy, there were the three cows, numerous 
calves, two pigs, two tortoiseshell cats, and a variable number 
of hens. Variable, for barring ' Sarah Aldridge,' the tyrant of the 
yard, their lives were sadlv precarious, and the cooking- pot in- 
satiable. * Sarah Aldridge, so named after the giver, was a light- 
coloured, speckled, plump hen with a white neck — a thoroughly 
bad character, a chartered Jezebel of a fowl, bearing a charmed and 
wholly undeserved existence. She took, says Kate Greenaway, the 
biggest share of everything, chased all the other hens, and — crowed. 

Stowed somewhere in Mary ChappelPs memory was the old 

" A whistling woman and a crowing hen 

Are neither good for God nor men. 

* Sarah Aldridge ' crowed. And when she crowed Mary became 
strangely moved with mingled rage and fear. She would fling 
down whatever she was doing. She would fly after ^ Sarah ' 
breathing dreadful threats. She would run her well-nigh out of 
her life, nor desist until she was compelled for want of breath. 
Then she would &11 into an awe-stricken state, which she called 
a ' dither,' convinced that because of this monstrous breach of nature 
some terrible thing would be sure to happen. 

But, notwithstanding her superstitions, Mrs. Chappell was a 
truly worthy woman,— one of the noblest. Indeed, Kate Green- 
away always insisted that she was the kindest, most generous, 
most charitable, the cheerfuUest, and most careful woman she 
had ever known. To quote her words, 'in all things she was 
highest and best.' She meant nothing derogatory to her husband 
when she told every one before his face that he was a 'poor 
creature.' He entirely agreed. There was no hint at his 
being 'wanting' in any particular, but rather that Providence 
was at fault in not vouchsafing him a full measure of health and 


Kate Greenaway 

strength. Indeed, he felt rather distinguished than otherwise 
when his wife drew attention to his infirmities. He was one of 
those who thoroughly enjoyed his bad health. 

It was a rule of life with Mrs. ChappcII never to speak ill of 
her neighbours. ' Ask me no questions and I will tell you no 
stories,' was the letter always on her lips, and the spirit of charity 
was always in her heart. She combined the utmost generosity 
with a maximum of carefulness. She did not know how to be 
wasteful. She had a merry heart, and Kate always maintained 
that it was through her that she learnt to be in love with cheer- 
fulness. So that more than one unmindful generation has since 
had cause to bless the memory of Mary Chappell. Her real name 
was Phyllis, Phyllis Barnsdale, previous to her marriage. Before 
going to RoUcston she had been in service with a Colonel, a 
friend of Lord Byron's and a neighbour 
of his at Newstead Abbey. Of her 
reminiscences Kate retained just two 
things. Of Byron, that his body was 
brought home in spirits of wine. Of 
the Colonel, that he was so short-sighted 
that the groom only rubbed down his 
horse on the near side, secure that the 
half- hear ted ness of his service would 
never be discovered. 

Coming to RoUcston, Phyllis Barns- 
dale entered the service of the Fryers, 
farmers and butchers. Mrs. Fryer, to 
whom she was devoted, was very severe, 
a violent - tempered woman but very 
kind-hearted. Here Phyllis stayed until 
she married, doing unheard-of quantities 
of work, up at half-past two in the morn- 
ings, or three at the latest, doing all the 
Mu. CHAfMi.t, DHUED fot domestlc work of the farm-house, and 
NTr'ACA^'iT'Tiii'co-pjit" washing the clothes of her master, her 
mistress, two girls, and ever so many boys. 
Work was her business in life and she didn't care how much she 
did. One condition only and there was nothing she was too proud 
to put her hand to. In one thing was she unyielding. She must 
have the highest wages in the village. These she would have, not 
because she loved money but just because her pride lay that way. 

Childhood in RoUeston 

When Kate first went to Rolleston the Fryers* farm had 
passed into the hands of a married daughter, Mrs. Neale, whose 
husband, an idle, good-natured, foolish man, smoked and drank 
whilst the butcher-business slipped through his fingers. In Kate's 
earliest days they were seemingly prosperous enough, attd one of 
the first things the little Greenaways had to do on arrival at 
Rolleston was to make an odd little morning call at ^ The House,' 
where they were regaled with cowslip wine and sponge-cakes. 
This was the etiquette of the place : it was the respect due from 
Cottage to Farm. 

The Fryers' garden was, in Kate's own words years afterwards, 
^ my loved one of all gardens I have ever known,' and that was 
saying a good deal, for it would be hard to find anywhere a 
greater lover of gardens than she was. It was her real Paradise. 
Round the windows of ' The House * grew the biggest and brightest 
convolvuluses in the world (at least in the world she knew)— deep 
blue blossoms with ' pinky ' stripes and deep pink blossoms with 
white stripes. Her intimacy with them told her every day where 
the newest blooms were to be found. Across the gravel path on 
the left as you emerged from ^ The House ' was a Targe oval bed, 
with roses, pinks, stocks, sweet Sultans, the brown scabious, white 
lilies, red lilies, red fuchsias, and in early summer, monster tulips, 
double white narcissus, peonies, crown imperials, and wallflowers. 
Indeed, all lovely flowers seemed to grow there. And the scent 
of them was a haunting memory through life. Then there were 
the biggest, thickest, and bushiest of box borders, nearly a yard 
high, so thick and solid that you could sit on them and they 
never gave way. These bounded the long gravel walk which led 
straight down to the bottom of the garden, and along which 
grew flowers of every lovely shape and hue. Beyond them 
on the left was the orchard — apples, pears, plums, and bushy 
filberts ; on the right the kitchen garden — currant bushes with 
their shining transparent bunches, red and white, gooseberries, 
strawberries, feathery asparagus, and scented herbs such as good 
cooks and housewives love. It was an enchanted fairyland to 
the little Londoner and had a far-reaching influence on her life 
and work. Later on her letters teemed with just such catalogues 
of flowers. So great was her love for them that, next to seeing 
them, the mere writing down of their names yielded the most 
pleasurable emotions. 

Another thing which greatly appealed to her was the spacious- 


Kate Greenaway 

ness of everything — the great house seemingly illimitable in itself, 
yet stretching out farther into vast store-houses and monster 
barns. For, those were days when threshing machines were 
unknown and corn had to wait long and patiently to fulfil its 
destiny. Indeed, people took pride in keeping their corn, un- 
threshed, just to show that they were in no need of money. 
Then large bands of Irishmen wandered over the country at harvest- 
time, leisurely cutting the corn with sickles, for the machine 
mower was at that time undreamed of. 

At the Neales', too, there were birds innumerable — peacocks 
strutting and spreading their tails, guinea-fowls, turkeys with 
alarming voices and not less alarming ways, geese, pigeons, ducks, 
and fowls. All these things were in the early Rolleston days, 
but they did not last. 

By degrees, through neglect and carelessness, the business 
drifted away from the Neales into more practical and frugal 
hands, and m the end they were ruined — ^wronged and defrauded 
by the lawyers, the Chappells believed, but in reality abolished 
by the natural process of cause and effect. Anyhow, the 
Chappells acted up to their belief, and with unreasoning loyalty 
gave them money, cows, indeed everything they had, until they 
were themselves literally reduced to existing on dry bread and 
were involved in the general downfall. In this Mary Chappell 
was, of course, the moving spirit, but her husband agreed with 
all she did, and took his poor fare without complaint. 

But before the crash came there were many happy days and 
lively experiences. There was Newark market on Wednesdays, 
to which Mary Chappell always went with Mrs. Neale, sometimes, 
but rarely, accompanied by the latter's husband. On special 
occasions Kate went too. Fanny, the brown pony, drew them in a 
lovely green cart. When Mr. Neale went, Mrs. Chappell and 
Kate sat behind. When he didn't, Kate sat behind alone and 
listened to the two ladies talking about Fanny as if she were a 
human being, discussing her health, her likes and dislikes of things 
she passed on the road, in full enjoyment of the never-failing topic 
of ' the old girl.* 

There was a good deal of preliminary interest about these 
expeditions. There was the walk up to * The House ' with Mary 
Chappell heavily laden with baskets of butter on each arm. Mary 
was no ordinary butter-seller. She would no more have dreamed 
of standing in the butter-market to sell her butter than she would 


childhood in RoUeston 

have dreamed of selling it to the shops to be vended over the counter 
like ordinary goods. Only people who did not keep their pans 
properly clean would stoop to that. No, she ^ 'livered ' her own 
butter. She had her own regular customers who had had her 
butter for years, and they always wanted more than she could 
supply. The making of good butter and cheese was part of her 
religion. She would drop her voice and speak only in whispers 
of people — ^half criminals she thought them — ^whose puncheons 
were not properly cleansed, whose butter might ' turn ' and whose 
cheese might * run.' 

Arrived at * The House,' they would find the green cart waiting 
before the door. Then a farm hand would stroll leisurely round with 
Fanny and put her into the shafts. Everything was done slowly 
at RoUeston, and bustle was unknown. Next would come Sarah 
Smith, the maid, with a basket after her kind. Then a help or 
out of-door servant, with another after his 
kind. A minute later some one bearing 
ducks or fowls with their legs tied. These 
went ignominiously under the seat, and 
took the cream, as it were, off Kate's day. 
Their very obvious fate made her miser- 
able, but she cajoled herself into something 
like happiness by imagining that some one 
might buy them ' who didn't want to eat 
them and would put them to live in a 
nice place where they could be happy.' 

As the prospect of starting became 
more imminent, Mrs. Neale would arrive 
with the whip and a small basket. Then 
Mr. Neale, and the two young Fryer 
nephews who lived with them, would 
stroll round to see them off. At the last 
moment would arrive baskets of plums, 
apples, pears, and, perhaps, sage cheeses, 
and a start would then be made. 

The five miles into Newark, through 
Staythorpe, Haverham, and Kelham, where 
the Suttons, to whom nearly all RoUeston 
belonged, lived at ^The Hall,' was a progress of great enjoyment and 
variety, for they knew not only all the people they met on the road, 
but all the animals and all the crops, and these had all to be discussed. 

33 5 

Mm. Nkale. 

Kate Greenaway 

Arrived at Newark, Mrs. Neale was left at the inn, whikt 
Mary and Kate went their rounds with the butter. AH the 
customers got to know Kate, and the little girl received a warm 
welcome year after year in the pretty red-brick, green-vine-clad 
courtyards with which Newark abounded. When the butter was 
sold the shopping came, and when all the necessary groceries and 
supplies had been laid in, a stroll through the market-place, where 
peppermints striped and coloured like shells were to be got. 
Why people bought groceries when they could afford peppermints 
Kate didn't know. 

In the market of course everything was on sale that could be 
imagined, from butter to boots, from pears to pigs, from crockery 
to calves. But it was the crockery that had a peculiar fascination 
for Mary, and many an unheard-of bargain made a hole in her 
thinly -lined pocket. These pots were from Staffordshire and 
became Kate's cherished possessions in after years. 

At last there was the weary return to the inn-yard to find 
Mrs. Neale, who might or might not be ready to go home. 
Anyhow Fanny and the cart were always welcome enough when 
the time came to exchange the confusion and hubbub of the town 
for the quiet country roads again. 

It didn't matter what time they arrived home, Chappell would 
always be found watching for them at the gate. Tea was ready 
and they were hungry for it ; Chappell, too, for he spent the whole 
afternoon on market days leaning over the gate. It was his one 
chance in the week of seeing his acquaintances as they passed to 
Newark, and it was his one chance of buying pigs. He had a 
weakness for pigs, and he would stop every cart that had a likely 
one on board. Sometimes he would have out a whole load, would 
bargain for half-an-hour, and then refuse to have one. Time was 
of no consequence to him, but the owner's wrath would be great, 
for all the pigs that were wanted in Newark might be bought 
before he could arrive there. Then the cart would be driven 
away to a blasphemous accompaniment, leaving Chappell blandly 
smiling, placid and undisturbed. This would be repeated many 
times until the pigs arrived which took his fancy. 

On great and rare occasions, Kate would go to market with 
Aunt Aldridge in a high dog-cart behind a spanking horse named 
Jack. Then she would have a taste of really polite society, and 
would be taken to dine in a big room at the chief inn with the 
leading farmers and their wives. For in the Nottinghamshire of 


Childhood in RoUeston 

those days the farmers were in a large way, prosperous and with 
plenty of money to spend. It was quite a shock and surprise to 
her in after life to see farmers in other parts of the country little 
better than labourers. For this reason she never cared for 
Thomas Hardy's books ; she never could get on terms with his 
characters. But with George Eliot's it was quite another matter. 
Mrs. Glegg, Mrs. TulHver, Mrs. Poyser, and the rest, she had 

*Dadas' and Ann going to Church. 

known all her life. They were old friends and she felt at home 
with them at once. 

Kate was present at two great events at RoUeston — a fire 
and a flood. Here is her own account of them : — 

The fire happened in a cottage joining Mrs. Neale's farm. It 
joined the kitchen. It was a blazing hot day in August, in the 
morning, about 1 1 o'clock, when suddenly there were loud shrieks of 
* Fire ! ' and I saw Ann rushing to the gate shouting out ' Fire ! ' at the 
top of her voice, quite unconscious of what she was doing. It was far 
off us. But the danger was to Mrs. Neale's. They all started off* 
except Ann and me. Then groups of people went rushing by to help ; 


Kate Greenaway 

by and by came my Aunt Aldridge and my sister Lizzie and all the 
work-women and servants that could possibly be spared. The small 
fire-engine was miles away at Southwell, so the men and women were 
formed into a long line from the house to the nearest point of the 
stream, and passed buckets of water from hand to hand (they could 
hardly use their hands for days afterwards). But the cottage was 
burnt down and a bit of the roof of Mrs. Neale's kitchen. Fortunately 
it stopped there, but they moved all the things out of the house for 
fear it should not be saved. The best bedroom floor of polished oak 
was so slippery the men could hardly walk about to move the things. 
Some of the men behaved disgracefully, tapping the casks of wine and 
beer that had to be brought out into the yard. I shall never forget 
my terror and fright of this day, and to ' Mamam ' it was as the end 
of all things. 

One summer when we went down — the day was pouring wet, it had 
been very rainy — I went to the Chappells*, Lizzie to Aunt Aldridge's. 
When I got up the next morning I found a great event had taken place 
in the night — the floods were out — rose in the night. They (the 
Chappells) were called up about 1 1 o'clock and had to get up and go 
off* to save their animals, which all had to be brought home. Fortu- 
nately they were in time to save them all — others were not so lucky. 
The house and the next house and the croft were high and dry. The 
croft was filled with animals — sheep and calves. When you looked 
out at the front gate, each way you looked you saw a stream of muddy 
water rushing across the road. There was a tendency to floods at 
Rolleston, only not bad like this. Both Trent and Greet overflowed 
and met and then flooded all over the country. No houses at 
Rolleston were washed away, but the lower parts of the houses were 
flooded, cellars and drains were filled up with water, the contents 
floating on the top. The people used to wait at the end of the street 
where the water rushed over, and people who were passing in carts 
would drive them through the water, and boys crossed over in washing-- 
tubs. A great many animals were drowned. The Neales lost a great 
many sheep. After some days the floods began to subside and you 
could begin to get about, and then my sister could get down to see me, 
for we were quite separated for days. After the water had all gone 
the country was horrible, covered with mud and dead worms, and it 
smelt dreadfully. I stayed some weeks, and before 1 left it had 
returned pretty much to its old look again. This was the only time 
I was ever there in what they called * the waters being out.* 

Next we have a glimpse of Kate making triumphant pro- 
gresses in the corn-waggons and hay-carts as they rattled back 
empty to the fields. The corn-waggons, it must be admitted, had 


Draiun by Kate Greenaivay token a young girl. 

Childhood in RoUeston 

a drawback in the little dark beetles — * clocks ' as the waggoners 
called them — which ran about and threatened her legs. But these 
were soon forgotten in the near prospect of a ride back perched 
high on the Harvest Home load, decked with green branches, 
while the men chanted — 

* Mr. is a good man, 

He gets his harvest as well as he can. 
Neither turned over nor yet stuck fast, 
He's got his harvest home at last. 
Hip, hip, hip, hurrah ! * 

And she loved to sit on the stile watching for the postman. 
In earliest days ^ he was an imposing person who rode on a donkey 
and blew a brass trumpet. If you wished to despatch a letter and 
lived alongside his beat you displayed it in your window to attract 
his attention. When he saw a letter thus paraded, he drew rein, 
blew a blast, and out you ran with your letter. If you lived off 
his route you had to put your letter in somebody else's window. 
So with the delivery. Aunt Aldridge's letters, for example, were 
left at the Chappells' and an old woman got a halfpenny a letter 
for taking them up to the Odd House.' In those days the post- 
man was clearly not made for man, but man for the postman. 

Once and once only Kate went fishing at the flour mill, 
which had its water-wheel on the Greet. She sketches the scene 
vividly in a few words. How lovely it all was, she tells us — the 
lapping of the water against the banks of the reedy river, the 
great heaps of corn, the husks, the floury sacks and carts, the 
white-coated millers, the clean white scent, and, above all, the 
excitement of looking out for the fish ! What could be better than 
that ? It was about as good as good could be, when of a sudden 
all was changed. There was a jerk of the rod, a brief struggle 
and a plunge, and there lay a gasping fish with the hook in its silly 
mouth, bleeding on the Ixank. What could be worse than that ? 
It was about as bad as bad could be. The sun had gone in. The 
sky was no longer blue, and misery had come into the world. 
She loathed the task of carrying the poor dead things home to be 
cooked, and she refused to partake of the dreadful dish. It was 
all too sad. The pleasant river and the bright glorious days were 
all over for them and she was not to be comforted. And that 
was the end of Kate's single fishing experience. Surely &te was in 
a singularly ironical mood when, in later years, it brought her 


Kate Greenaway 

a letter of hypercritical remonstrance because of her supposed 
advocacy of what the writer considered a cruel and demoralising 
sport ! 

Indeed, we have only to read her rhyme of * Miss Molly and 
the little fishes* in Marigold Garden to realise that her senti- 
ments as a child remained those of the woman : 

Oh, sweet Miss Molly, 

You're so fond 

Of fishes in a little pond. 

And perhaps they're glad 

To see you stare 

With such bright eyes 

Upon them there. 

And when your fingers and your thumbs 

Drop slowly in the small white crumbs, 

I hope they're happy. Only this — 

When youVe looked long enough, sweet miss. 

Then, most beneficent young giver. 

Restore them to their native river. 

In this fashion the little ^ Lunnoner/ as she was always called, 
got her fill of the country, and her intimacy with more or less 
unsophisticated nature — a love which was her prevailing passion 
throughout her life. 

Her early education was alike unsatisfactory and varied, for at 
that time it was extremely difficult to find girls' schools at once 
convenient of access and reasonable in price, where the teaching 
was of any value. After leaving Mrs. Allaman's, of whom mention 
has been made, Kate was handed over to a Miss Jackson, where 
she remained only a few days. Thence she went to a Miss Varley, 
but here also her career was a short one. She soon fell ill, ' under 
the strain,' said Mrs. Greenaway, ^of impossible lessons,' and was 
promptly removed. 

Then a trial was made of some ladies named Fiveash. Here 
again Kate's health flagged. She herself was inclined to put 
it down to the fact that Miss Anne Fiveash, of whom she 
was otherwise fond enough, had a cross eye, which filled her 
with terror. At any rate, the new scheme succeeded no better 
than the old ones, and this for the time being was an end 
of school. Henceforward the child's education was continued, 
if it could properly be said yet to have begun, by a lady who 
came two or three afternoons a-week to give lessons (very bad 
ones they were) in French and music. This arrangement lasted 


Draivn in his old age hy Kate Greenaway. 

Childhood in RoUeston 

for several years ; at the end of which time Kate went back to 
Miss Fiveash's, where she remained until she left school altogether. 
During all this time she was drawing as much as she could in 

When Kate was six years old her brother John was born ; and 
of course she remembered to her dying day all the clothes he ever 
had, and all those which she and her sisters had at the same time ; 
and she notes the details of three of his earliest costumes which 
she remembered to good purpose. First, a scarlet pelisse, and a 
white felt hat with feathers ; next, a drab pelisse and a drab felt 
hat with a green velvet rosette -y and thirdly, he was resplendent 
in a pale blue frock, a little white jacket, and a white Leghorn hat 
and feather — ^all of which afterwards found resurrection in the 
Greenaway picture-books. 

There was always a deep bond of sympathy between Mr. 
Greenaway and his little daughter, whom, by the way, he nick- 
named 'Knocker,' to which it amused him to compare her face 
when she cried. Her devotion to her hthcr doubtless had far- 
reaching results, for not only was Mr. Greenaway an accomplished 
engraver, but an artist of no mean ability. And there was a 
fascination and mystery about his calling which made a strong 
appeal to her imagination. On special occasions he would be 
commissioned to make drawings for the Illustrated London News^ 
and then Kate's delight would be unbounded. The subject might 
be of Queen Victoria at some such ceremony as the opening of 
Parliament ; or sometimes of some more stirring occurrence — 
such, for example, as that which necessitated the long journey into 
Staffordshire to make sketches of the house and surroundings of 
the villainous doctor, William Palmer, the Rugeley murderer, an 
event which stood out in her memory as of supreme interest and 

Mr. Greenaway's office, as long as Kate could remember, was 
4, Wine Office Court, Fleet Street. There most of his work was 
done ; but when, as frequently happened, there was a scramble to 
get the wood blocks engraved in time for the press, he would 
have to work the greater part of two consecutive nights. Then 
he would bring portions of his blocks home, distributing the less 
important sections among his assistants, so that the whole might be 
ready in the morning. 

These were times of superlative pleasure to Kate. She would 
wake up about midnight and see the gas still burning outside in 


Kate Greenaway 

the passage. This meant that her &ther was hard at work down- 
stairs. About one o'clock he would go to bed, snatch an hour or 
two's sleep, and be at it again until it was time to be off to the 
City. This was his routine, and Kate quickly planned how to take 
iadvantage of it. 

Waiting till sister Fanny was asleep, she would slip out of bed, 
hurry into her clothes, all except her frock and shoes, and, covering 
them with her little nightgown, creep back into bed again. 
Thus prepared for eventualities, she would fall asleep. But not for 
long. Somehow she would manage to wake again in the small 
hours of the morning and see if the light of the gas jet in the 
passage still shone through the chink of the door. If it did, she 
would climb with all quietness out of bed, dofF her nightdress, slip 
into her frock, take her shoes in her hand and creep softly down to 
the drawing-room, where her father was at work. Then he would 
fasten her dress and she would set to work to make his toast. And 
so the two would breakfast together alone in the early hours with 
supreme satis&ction. 

Here Miss Greenaway's autobiographical notes come to an 
abrupt termination, save for a sheet of memoranda which stimulate 
but do not satisfy curiosity. How, we may ask, did the * Fear of 
Water-taps ' take her ? — a fear which lasted all her life. What 
confessions did she contemplate under the heading ^ My Religious 
Fit,' and * My Fight,' and what episodes would have grouped 
themselves under * Pincushions ' ? 


Explanatory Skxtch of Rolleston Cottage Farm. 

Gate to Croft. Cart Shed. c^JScn. 

Our Bedroom. Mamam's Bedroom. 
Kitchen. Houm. Parlour. 



FbhU Drtiang iy Birkil Feilir, R.lf.S. h ike putmtKn cf Jalm Granatvay, Eij. 






^ In 1857 the whole of Great Britain, as has been said, was stirred to 
its'depdis by the terrible events which were taking place in India. 
People talked and thought of little else besides the Mutiny, and 
the papers, prominent amone them the Illustrated London News^ 
properly played up to the public's dreadful hunger for literary and 
pictorial details. Many of the latter passed through the hands of 
Mr. Greenaway, and nothing was more natural than that Kate, 
with her inborn artistic capacity, should try her hand at ex- 
pressing the sensations so aroused, pictorially. Here is her own 
memorandum on the subject, written on an isolated leaf of the 
autobiographic notes : — 

At the time of the Indian Mutiny I was always drawing people 
escaping. I wish I had some of the old drawings, but they were 
nearly always done on a slate and rubbed off again. We knew all 
about it from the Illustrated London News^ and the incident of the 
Highland woman who heard the bagpipes made a great impression on 
me. I could sit and think of the sepoys till I could be wild with 
terror, and I used sometimes to dream of them. But I was always 
drawing the ladies, nurses, and children escaping. Mine always 
escaped and were never taken. 

Fortunately, Kate's father and mother were not blind to the 
promise of these tentative efforts. The root of the matter they 
felt was in her, and the first opportunity must be taken of giving 
it a chance of growth and development. This opportunity was 
not long in coming, and by the time she was twelve years old her 
artistic education had already begun. 

The first art class to which she went was that held at William 
Street, Clerkenwell, close to Claremont Square. A girl-cousin 

41 6 

Kate Greenaway 

(one of the Thornes) was at that time being educated as a wood- 
engraver by Mr. John Greenaway, who sent his pupil to this 
evening class — z school in connection with the Science and Art 
Department (now the Board of Education). So that she should 
not go alone, his daughter was sent to bear her company i 
and Klate soon showed such undoubted signs of ability that it 
was decided her attendance should continue. She was soon 
promoted to the day class carried on by Miss Doidge, which was 
held at Miss Springet's school at Canonbury House, also under 
the Science and Art Department, and Kate reniained a member 
of it during its successive removals to St. George's Hall, Barns- 
bury Street, and Myddleton Hall, close to the Greenaways' 
dwelling. To Kate, Canonbury House was an ancient palace. 
It was an interesting old place, with beautiful moulded ceilings 
and a wonderful Jacobean fireplace, which is figured and described 
in Nelson's History of Islington, It stood immediately behind 
Canonbury Tower, which was said to have been one of Queen 
Elizabeth's innumerable hunting-boxes, and was popularly believed 
to have subterranean passages leading to Smithfield. 

So satisfactory and encouraging was Kate's progress — her first 
prize was gained when she was twelve years old — that in due 
time it was determined that she should make Art her profession, 
and she forth with Joined the chief school of the Art Department, 
then under Mr. R. Burchett, who soon formed a very high 
opinion of her talents and prospects. In 1861 she was awarded 
the bronze medal (local). Stage 10 A ; in 1864 the * National,' 
Stage 22 ; and in 1869 the silver (South Kensington), Stage 
17^.^ The set of six tiles, here reproduced, display charming 
harmonies of colour. One is composed of olive-green and two 
different yellows on a slate -blue ground, while the flowers are 
outlined with white edges. In another, crimson-purple, russet- 
yellow, and blue are on a slate-grey ground ; and in a third the 
grey-blue flowers are outlined with white, and grey-green, violet, 
purple, and yellow tell richly on a brown ground. The other 
schemes of colour are equally well combined, and the pattern 
designs are all good, and display a sense of grace and ability in 
line and arrangement.^ In addition to the awards mentioned, 

^ The head in water-colours, which won her the silver medal, was bought by the 
late Sir Julian Goldsmid. 

' Oncial inscription on the drawing : * National Medallion Award. Finsbury, 1864. 
Stage 22. Aged 17 years. Time in School, 9 sessions, 4 hours a week. Medals 
already obtained in Stages 4^, lo*, 10^, 22<^. Teachers :' S. A. Doidge, S. Hipwood.' 



A facumiU reproduction m colour of one of the drenoings for tiles shown in the 

flMe illustrating the set 9fsix, 

Student Days and Early Success 

Kate received many book prizes in lieu of medals to which she 
was later entitled. Here she worked for several years with great 
diligence and thoroughness, undaunted by difficulties and hard- 
ships such as faU to the lot of few students. Indeed, so eagerly 
industrious was she that at the same time she attended the Life 
Classes at Heatherley's, and later on the newly opened London 
Slade School, then in charge of Professor Legros and his assistants. 

It has often been said of Kate Greenaway that she did not 
sufficiently draw from the nude, and, as will be seen later on. 
Professor Ruskin implored her to undertake this severer form of 
study, in order to correct and improve her figure drawing ; and 
it has been too readily assumed that her training was lacking in 
this essential element of an artist's academic education. As a 
matter of fact, Kate executed a vast number of careful studies 
from the figure, both at Heatherley's and at a studio which she 
occupied with Miss Elizabeth Thompson (afterwards Lady Butler) 
— who, like Miss Helen Paterson (Mrs. William Allingham), was 
her fellow-student at South Kensington — ^and at her death between 
fifty and a hundred were still in existence. Many of them were 
in ' the old South Kensington manner ' — in pencil or chalk, plenty 
of stump-work, and heightening of the lights with white chalk : 
dull, uninspired things, excellent in proportion and construction, 
and not without use for the acquisition of knowledge of the human 
frame. There were also short-time sketches, but only a few of 
the chalk drawings have been preserved. 

Of these student days Lady Butler kindly sends the following 
note : — 

She and I were keen competitors in the Sketching Club competi- 
tions at South Kensington. She was a very quiet student, so that it is 
difficult to find anything striking to say of her. I have no letters of 
hers and no sketches. We were very good friends, she and I, in 
spite of our rivalry in the sketching club ; and indeed so quiet and 
peaceable a student was necessarily liked, and she never, to my know- 
ledge, gave trouble or offence to any one in the schools. I wish I 
could give you more material, but the character of the girl was such 
as to supply very little wherewith to make up a biographical sketch* 
I only knew her at the schools, not in her home life. 

It may be added that Miss Thompson and Kate Green- 
away were both such enthusiastic workers that they would bribe 
the custodian to lock them in when the other students were gone, 
so that they might put in overtime. 


Kate Greenaway 

Such was the regularity and steady application of Kate's eager 
student days. By the time she was twenty-two she was exhibit- 
ing at the old Dudley Gallery a water-colour drawing entitled 
' Kilmeny,' illustrating a versified legend, and ^ six little draw- 
ings on wood ' : the latter, as we shall see, fortunate enough to 
attract the attention of an excellent judge and discriminating editor. 
This was in the year 1868, and here, in the old Egyptian Hall, 
her work made its first public appearance. Then there came a 
series of small pictures in water-colour at the same gallery, in 
which she already gave evidence of the bent which her brush was 
to follow with such remarkable success.^ Even then her fancy 
was leading her back to the quaintly picturesque costume which 
v^s in vogue at the close of the eighteenth century. Not that her 
enthusiasm for our grandmothers' gowns at once tickled the fancy 
of the public. That was to come. Indeed, she herself was as yet 
only feeling her way, though with remarkable deliberation and 
thoroughness. No doubt it was in her first remunerative but 
anonymous work of designing valentines and Christmas cards that 
the possibilities which lay in childhood archaically, or at least 
quaintly, attired first presented themselves to her, but the goal was 
not to be reached without unstinted labour and active forethought. 
Her subsequent success rested upon the thoroughness with which 
she laid her foundations.' She did not merely pick up an old book 
of costumes and copy and adapt them second-hand to her own uses. 
She began from the very beginning, fashioning the dresses with her 
own hands and dressing up her models and lay-figures in order to 
realise the effects anew. She would not allow herself any satisfac- 
tion until her models lived and moved in her presence as their 
parents or grandparents had lived and moved in the previous 
century. Only then was she sure of her ground and could go 
forward with confidence. 

^ The following it a complete list of her exhibits at the Dudley Gallery : — 

1 868 — Kilmeny. 

1869 — ^The Fairies of the *Caldon Low/ 
1870 — Apple Blossom — A Spring Idyll. 
1872 — (1) A Study. 

(2) A Reverie. 
i875~-Little Miss Prim. 
1876— Little Girls at Play. 
1877 — (1) In Spring Time. 

(2) Dorothy. 

* See Mr. Lionel Robinson's introduction to the Exhibition of Kate Greenaway's 
X Works in 1891. 


(3) Birthday Tea. 

(4) A Procession of Children with 

1878 — M A Procession of Children. 

(2) Darby and Joan. 

(3) Miss Patty. 
1879 — (i) Prissy. 

(2) A Morning Call. 

Sa t/Tih Diauiingi in Colour 

Student Days and Early Success 

^ ^ ixmi^ 




y^^r '■ \ 

:.::^v— ,' 1 / / 


Early Pencil Sketch for a Christmas Card. 


At the risk of slightly 
anticipating later events, 
there may be interpolated 
here the following facts, 
dealing mainly with her 
early work, kindly pro- 
vided for our purposes by 
the Rev. W. J. Loftie, 
who has a legitimate 
source of pride in the 
fact that he was Kate 
Greenaway's first outside 
employer : for work had 
already come to her 
through her father's in- 

At the time of the 
first Black and White 
1 1 Exhibition (i868) at the 
Dudley Gallery, Egyp- 
tian Hall, Piccadilly, Mr. 
Loftie was editor of the 
People^s Magaxine. He 
II was much pleased with a 
ll frame of six drawings on 
wood, which were priced 
at ^2 : 2s., and he secured 
Pi them at once. The 
artist's name, he found, 
was * K. Greenaway,' and 
bs he was ^iven the address : 
^\ Miss itate Greenaway, 
Upper Street, Islington — 

Kate Greenaway 

a student at South Kensington. The drawings were equally 
divided between fairy scenes in outline and pictures of child life. 
He used them in the magazine as occasion allowed, and some 
of his leading contributors, Charles Eden, Robert Bateman, John 
Richard Green, who were charmed with their beauty, wrote little 
tales or verses to suit one or other, until three or four were 
disposed of. But he was puzzled about the rest, and eventu- 
ally wrote to ask Miss Greenaway to tell him the subjects.^ 
She called immediately at the ofEce. She was very small, very 
dark, and seemed clever and sensible, with a certain impressive 
expression in her dark eyes that struck every one. Her visit 
led to further acquaintance, in which Mrs. Loftie shared, and she 
became a frequent visitor at 57, Upper Berkeley Street, where 
they then lived. The magazine soon came to an end, but Miss 
Greenaway was an artist who never disappointed her employers, and 
before long many opportunities occurred for recommendfing her. 
She had some work to do for Kronheim & Co. about that time, but 
— forgetting, apparently, her excellent achievement at South Ken- 
sington — she found a difficulty with colours. Like many beginners, 
she imagined that a sufficient number of bright colours made a 
bright-coloured picture, and being disappointed with the result, 
complained to Mr. Loftie. So he got the little manual of Colour- 
Harmony which was prepared by Redgrave for the South Kensing- 
ton authorities and gave it to her. In the meanwhile Messrs. 
Marcus Ward of Belfast had consulted Mr. Loftie as to extending 
their business, and proposed to carry out a scheme he had laid before 
them some time before for issuing artistic Christmas cards and 
valentines in gold and colours. Miss Greenaway entered into the 
idea with great zest, but at first her designs were, as she said herself, 
gaudy. A little study of colour-harmony soon showed her where 
the fault lay, and she used to ask her friend to set her exercises 
in it — in primaries, or secondaries, or tertiaries, as the case might 
be. She derived extraordinary pleasure from studying the colour 
scale of such a picture as Van Eyck's ^Jean Arnolhni and his 
Wife ' in the National Gallery, or Gainsborough's so-called * Blue 

^ These were the first things she ever sold publicly. Mr. Loftie forgets the apparent 
fact that the two remaining designs were also published, though at a lata* date, for on 
looking through the volume of the Peoples M^a%ine for 1873 we find on pp. 24 and 97 
two of her drawings (unsigned) written up to respectively by * M. £. ' and * E. J. Ellis.' 
The first accompanies a set of verses entitled * Nonsense about Cat*s Cradle * ; the second 
a sort of Alice-in- Wonderland story entitled * Bebel,' an ingenious rendering of a somewhat 
cryptic design. 


Student Days and Early Success 

Boy.' It was only by incessant study of this kind earnestly 
pursued that she acquired the delicate and exquisite facility for 
figures and flowers in colour by which she soon became known. 
Meanwhile she drew constantly in black and white, and illustrated 
a child's book, TopOy by Miss Blood, afterwards Lady Colin Camp- 
bell, which was published by Messrs. Ward and speedily went out of 
print. A volume of valentines, The Quiver of Love^ was published 
about the same time, and contained specimens of colour-printing 
by the same firm after her drawings and those of Mr. Walter 

Miss Greenaway worked very hard at the production of the 
designs for birthday cards and valentines. I^hey constantly im- 
proved in harmony of colour and delicacy of eftect. A curious 
chance revealed to her the wonders of medieval illumination. Mr. 
Lroftie was engaged at the time on a volume of topographical 
studies for the Society for the Promotion of Christian Knowledge, 
and wanted a copy from the pages of the book of Benefactors of 
St. Albans Abbey — Nero^ D. 7, in the MS. room at the British 
Museum. Mr. Thompson, better known as Sir £. Maunde 
Thompson, Principal Librarian, was head of the department, 
and showed her many of the treasures in his charge, and he 
arranged her seat and gave her every possible assistance. She 
undertook to make a coloured drawing of Abbot John of Berk- 
hampstead wringing his hands, for Mr. Loftie's book. Being still 
in want of work, this particular job, with its collateral advantages 
in learning, pleased her very much. Another lady who was copy- 
ing an illuminated border was her next neighbour at the same 
table, and they seem to have made one another's acquaintance on 
the occasion. In after years Miss Greenaway quaintly said ' this 
was the first duchess she had ever met' — the late Duchess of 
Cleveland, Lord Rosebery's mother, who was a notable artist, and 
who died only a few months before Miss Greenaway herself. As 
for the Abbot, the committee of the S.P.C.K. rejected him, and 
the picture passed into and remained in Mr. Loftie's possession. 
It figured later in his London Afternoons (p. no), as Miss 
Greenaway only a few days before her death gave him leave to 
make what use of it he pleased. 

Her first great success was a valentine. It was designed for 
Messrs. Marcus Ward, whose London manager hardly recognised, 
her introducer thought, what a prize they had found. The rough 

' This wat also published by Metsrt. Marcus Ward & Co. 


Kate Greenaway 

proof of the drawing, in gold and colour, is both crude and in- 
harmonious, but it has merits of delicacy and composition which 
account for the fact that the firm is said to have sold upwards of 
25,000 copies of it in a few weeks. Her share of the profits was 
probably no more than ^3. She painted many more on the same 
terms that year and the next, and was constantly improving in 
every way as she became better acquainted with her own powers 
and with the capabilities, at that time very slight, of printing in 
colour. ^I have a beautiful design,' says Mr. Loftie, ^in the 
most delicate tints, for another valentine, which she brought me 
herself to show how much better she now understood harmony. 
It was unfinished, and in fact was never used by the firm. I 
need not go into the circumstances under which she severed her 
connection with them, but I well remember her remarlcable good- 
temper and moderation. In the end it was for her benefit. Mr. 
Edmund Evans seized the chance, and eventually formed the 
partnership which subsisted for many years, till near the end of 
her life.' 

About the year 1879 Mr. Loftie met her one day at a private 
view in Bond Street. She was always very humble about herself. 
She was the very last person to recognise her own eminence, 
and was always, to the very end, keen to find out if any one could 
teach her anything or give her a hint or a valuable criticism. She 
was also very shy in general society, and inclined to be silent and 
to keep in the background. On this occasion, however, she 
received him laughing heartily. 'The lady who has just left 
me,' she said, ' has been staying in the country and has been to 
see her cousins. I asked if they were growing up as pretty as they 
promised. " Yes," she replied, " but they spoil their good looks, 
you know, by dressing in that absurd Kate Greenaway style " — 
quite forgetting that she was talking to me ! ' Kate would often 
repeat the story with much zest. 

On two subsequent occasions did she execute work for books 
in which Mr. Loftie was concerned. In 1879 he asked her for 
some suggestions for illustrations of Mr. and Lady Pollock's Amateur 
Theatricals in his 'Art at Home' Series (Macmillan & Co.). 
She sent him half-a-dozen lovely sketches, of which only three 
were accepted by the publishers. The frontispiece, 'Comedy,' 
a charming drawing, was not well engraved. A tailpiece on p. 17 
shows a slight but most graceful figure of a young girl in the 
most characteristic ' Kate Greenaway ' costume. The third, less 



From a large water-colour Jra^u'mg in the possession of John Greenavoayy Esq^ 

Student Days and Early Success 

characteristic, is even more charming — ^ Going on.' Among the 
sketches was a ^Tragedy/ represented by a youthful Hamlet in 
black velvet holding a large turnip apparently to represent the 
skull of Yorick. This was never completed. 

Once again, in 1891, she made a drawing at Mr. Loftie's in- 
stance. He was editing the fourth edition of the Orient Guide 
for Mr. J. G. S. Anderson, the Chairman of the Orient Line, who 
had lately, through his wife, Mrs. Garrett Anderson, M.D., 
made Miss Greenaway's acquaintance. It was suggested that she 
might design a title-page for the guide, which she did with 
alacrity, refusing remuneration, and only stipulating for the return 
of her drawing. It was a charming border, consisting of twelve 
delightful little girls and two little boys, all ^Kate Greenaway' 
children, very dainty, but extraordinarily inappropriate for the 
title-page of a steamship company's guide-book. 

As soon as the introduction to Messrs. Marcus Ward was 
brought about, Kate Greenaway made a practice of consulting 
Mr. \Villiam Marcus Ward on the subject of her artistic and 
literary ambitions. In the matter of her drawing and painting 
she bowed to his expert opinion, unhesitatingly destroying her 
work when he told her that it was bad, and for years profited by 
his kindly advice \ but when in the matter of her verses he told 
her that her efforts were ^ rubbish and without any poetic feeling,' 
though she listened meekly enough, she reserved her opinion 
— as we shall see in the event, not without some measure of 

After working for the firm for six or seven years, during 
which time her designs were trump cards in their annual pack, 
she was advised by fi-iends that the drawings ought to be returned 
to her after reproduction. This new departure, however, did not 
meet with her employers' approval, and the connection ceased. 

Amongst the early and unsigned work done for Messrs. 
Kronheim, who had a great colour-printing establishment in Shoe 
Lane, may be mentioned Diamonds and Toads^ in ' Aunt Louisa's 
London Toy Books' Series (published by Frederick Warne & 
Co.), containing six full-page unsigned drawings of no striking 
promise and crude in colour, the harshness mainly due, no doubt, 
to the rude methods of engraving and colour-printing for children 
then in vogue. Far better was the work done in the same 
style and for the same firm in 1871 for a series of 'Nursery 
Toy Books' (published by Gall & Inglis), amongst which 

49 7 

Kate Greenaway 

may be mentioned, for the sake of the collector. The Fair One 
with Golden Locks^ The Babes in the Wood^ Blue Beard^ 
Tom Thumbj Hop ^ my Thumb^ Red Riding Hood^ The Blue Bird, 
The JVhite Cat^ and Puss in Boots, In these the illustrations, 
remarkably well composed and drawn, rise somewhat above the 
level of children's coloured books of the period. 7'he figures were 
mainly studied from members of her own family. The letterpress 
consisted for the most part of translations from the Fairy Tales 
of Madame la Comtesse d'Aulnoy, the well-known author of the 
Memoirs and Voyages in Spain^ who flourished at the end of 
the seventeenth and the beginning of the eighteenth century. 
Her fairy tales had been originally published in Amsterdam in 
eight little volumes, with thirty-three plates signed *S. F. inv. et 
sc' — a set very different from the fanciful illustrations of Kate 

Up to the year 1871 it is not possible to be very precise as to 
Kate's progress towards the overwhelming popularity which she 
was so soon to win. But from that time onwards her systematic 
keeping of accounts enables us to be definite. Besides the work 
done for Messrs. Kronheim, for which she was paid /36, we have 
the entry, ' Happy Wretched Family,* los. j 'Tracts^ (apparently 
for the Religious Tract Society), /2:5s. j and commissions for 
a Mr. Sheers and Mr. Griffith,^ £24 : los. ; the year's takings 
amounting to something over ^70. 

The preceding year she had been represented at the Dudley 
Gallery by a water-colour drawing entitled 'Apple -Blossom — A 
Spring Idyll ' ; and in Suffolk Street, for the first time, by another 
entitled 'A Peeper,' representing children at play. In 1871 too, 
as we have seen from Mr. Loftie's note, she was designing 
Christmas cards for Messrs. Marcus Ward of Belfast. In these 
drawings she adopted the style of dress which she had seen as a 
child about the farm at RoUeston, where there was a survival of 
costumes which had long since disappeared from the towns and 
more ' progressive ' villages and country districts, adapting them to 
her purpose and filling her wardrobes with frocks, bonnets, and 
jackets and other garments, partly conjured up from memory 
and partly invented. She soon began to discover that she was 
creating a vogue. She felt their quaintness and charm herself, and 
was hardly surprised that others found them equally attractive. 
And notwithstanding some doubts thrown by her fether, artist 

^ Of Messri. Griffith, Farran, & Co., for whom she worked later. 


Student Days and Early Success 

though he was, upon her wisdom in proceeding upon these lines, 
she determined to persist, and events proved her instinct to be 
right. Fortunately, her friend Mr. Stacy Marks, R.A., at the 
moment of crisis gave her strong support, and in the face of 
universal opposition urged her to continue in the path on which 
she had entered. 

In 1872 she was designing vellow-baclc covers for Mr. 
Edmund Evans, of whom much will be heard later.^ At the same 
time she was doing more work for Kronheim, she found her way 
into the Illustrated London Netusy and she sold her pictures at the 
Dudley Gallery for something like ^20. 

By 1873, doubtless through the influence of her father, who 
at that time was doing much work for Messrs. Cassell, Petter, 
& Galpin, Kate made her first appearance in Little Folks^ for 
which, as well as for other publications of the firm, she executed 
innumerable dainty and characteristic drawings. This, of course, 
was mostly journeyman's work, and she was hampered by having 
to express other people's ideas pictorially. She never excelled as 
an illustrator, and it was not till she had a free hand that she did 
herself full justice. It was, however, an excellent school wherein 
to test her powers and to gain the experience which led her 
eventually to ' find herself.' In many of these wood-engravings 
it is interesting to notice the joint signature *K. Greenaway, 
del.,* and *J. Greenaway, sc' She disliked being bound by 
another person's imagination, and her aversion to ' mere illustra- 
tion* remained with her to the end. As late as February 1900, 
when she was asked if she would make a drawing to a story by 
Mrs. M. H. Spielmann, she wrote : ^ It would rather depend if I 
saw my way to making a good illustration. I'm a very tiresome 
person and. do things sometimes very badly. I should, if I could, 
like to do it very much, especially as it is Mrs. Spielmann's. I've 
not made any drawings for illustration for so long, and now I've 
just taken a book to do ! ' ^ 

In this same year (1873) her pictures at the Dudley and Suffolk 
Street Galleries found a market, and ' A Fern Gatherer,' at the 
Royal Manchester Institution, was bought by Mr. John Lomax 
for fifteen guineas. The following year (1874) her gross earnings 

^ An excellent account of Mr. Evani's work it to be found in The British and 
Coiomal Primtir and Stationer for March 3 1, 1904. 

* The April Baby*s Book of Twtes, by the author cf Elisiabeth and her German 


Kate Greenaway 

were £i20j and she realised that she was progressing steadily in 
public favour. 

Kate was now a person of some importance in the Greenaway 
establishment. Not only had she adopted a profession, but she 
was making that profession pay, and the time was coming when 
she felt- that there should be some tangible sign, at least so far as 
she was concerned, of the improvement in their fortunes. It was 
a cause of profound gratification to her mother, who, by dint of 
thrift and self-sacrifice and devotion amoimting almost to heroism, 
had been enabled to realise her ambition to educate each of her 
children to the greatest advantage. Her eldest daughter was 
sent to the Royal Academy of Music ; her son to the Royal 
College of Chemistry ; and Kate to South Kensington and 
Heatherley's. All of them were on the high-road to success, and 
a sense of satisfaction and good-humour permeated the household. 

Good-humour, indeed, was characteristic of Kate, and to this 
sweetness of disposition and thoughtfulness for others she owed 
not a little of her success. Artists' grown-up models are often 
difficult enough to manage, but child-models are apt to prove 
exasperating ; and it was due only to her infinite tact and un- 
wearying resourcefulness in inventing amusements and distractions 
for her little sitters that she coaxed them into good temper 
and into displaying the charm which she was so successful in 

During the last year or two spent in Islington, Kate rented 
near by a room which she fitted up as a studio, but about 
1873 or 1874 she and her father between them bought the^ lease 
of a house in Pemberton Gardens, where the family lived till 1885. 

Her friend Mrs. Miller writes of her at this period : ^ She was 
then as ever gentle, patient, industrious, exquisitely sensitive, ex- 
traordinarily humorous, while under and over it all was an indomit- 
able will. I always remember one little remark she made to me 
once when we were walking from her home in Islington to a little 
room she had taken as a studio (her first) in a side street. It was 
wet and miserable, the streets vulgar and sordid. '* Never mind,** 
she said, '' I shall soon be in the spring." The first primrose she 
drew upon the sheet before her would place her in another world. 
She loved all sorts of street music, and once said to me, ^ The 
moment I hear a band, I am in fairyland.*' ' 

In 1874 Kate Greenaway illustrated a little volume of fairy 
stories, issued in coloured boards by Griffith & Farran, entitled 


Pacil Sttici *j Kait Crii-a 

Student Days and Early Success 

Fairy Gifis i or A IVallet of Wonder u It was written by Kathleen 
Knox, the author of Father Timers Story^Book^ and contained four 
full-page and seven small woodcuts, engraved by John Greenaway. 
The more important illustrations are prettily composed, while 
revealing a fine taste in witches and apparitions ; and the small 
sketches are daintily touched in. It was Kate's first appearance 
on any title-page. There was nothing remarkable in the little 
volume, yet it met with considerable popular favour. The first 
edition consisted of 2,000 copies \ in 1880 it was reprinted to 
the extent of half as many. In 1882 a cheap edition of 5,000 
copies was issued, and later in the year this large number was 
repeated. To what extent the artist shared in the success does 
not appear. 

The year 1875, so far as earnings were concerned, was a lean 
year, and introduced the names of no new clients. This does not 
indicate that her activity was any the less than the year before. 
Indeed, we must remember that in the life of the artist results, so 
far as monetary reward is concerned, represent previous rather 
than contemporaneous activity, for payment is made certainly 
after the work is sold, and in the case of work for the press as often 
as not after publication. In the following year (1876) her earnings 
again ran into j^200, her water-colour drawing at the Dudley being 
sold for twenty guineas, and her two black-and-white drawings for 
ten guineas the pair. But the crowning event of this year was 
the publication by Mr. Marcus Ward of the volume mentioned 
by Mr. Loftie, entitled * The ^iver of Lvue^ a Collection of 
Valentines^ Ancient and Modern^ with Illustrations in Colours 
from Drawings by Walter Crane and K. Greenaway.* All 
the designs had already been published separately. The verses 
were mainly from the pen of Mr. Loftie himself, although he is 
modest enough not to claim them in his notes. 

None of the illustrations in this volume is signed, but the 
following are the productions of Kate Greenaway : (i) The 
Frontispiece ; (2) the illustration to * Do I love you ? ' by Julia 
Goddard ; (3) that to ^ The Surprise,' anonymous ; and (4) that to 
* Disdain,* by F. R. It would have been difficult to arrive 
at their authorship without the direct evidence of Mr. Walter 
Crane, who has identified his part in the publication. Probably, 
had not Kate Greenaway 's name appeared on the title-page, it 
would scarcely have occurred to any one, even to those best 
acquainted with her work, that she had had any hand in the 


Kate Greenaway 

production at all. The volume is merely interesting as a curiosity. 
It is not surprising to learn that the re-publication in permanent 
form, with his name attached, of ephemeral and unsigned work 
executed for the butterfly existence of a valentine, did not com- 
mend itself to Mr. Crane ; and to neither artist did any profit 




So far Kate had been going through the usual 
experiences of the free-lance who with pen or 
pencil in hand sets forth to win recognition from 
the public. Public taste is the hardest thing 
in the world to gauge by those who would be 
original according to their talents, and harder 
still is it to arrest attention, save by gasconades 
of which she certainly was wholly incapable. 
Hitherto she had been the servant eager to please 
the whim of her master, but the time was coming 
when she would call the tune and the public 
would delight to dance to it. 

Kate Greenaway was now in her thirty-third 
year, and, though fairly prosperous, could scarcely 
consider herself successful. Commissions were 
certainly coming in faster and ^ter, and in 
1877, when she took her studio to College Place, 
Liverpool Road, Islington, her earnings had 
nearly reached ^^300 ; but she had not yet made any great indi- 
vidual mark, dhe appeared in the Royal Academy Exhibition and 
sold her picture ' Musing ' for twenty guineas. She was a recog- 
nised contributor to the Dudley Gallery, and was pretty sure of 
buyers there. She was getting more or less regular employment 
on the Illustrated London News. She had been asked by Mr. 
W. L. Thomas of the newly established Graphic to provide him 
with a running pictorial full -page story after the manner of 
Caldecott, and had succeeded in satisfying his fastidious taste, 


Kate Greenaway 

though the first sketch-plan which she sent seemed to him lacking 
in humour. * They strike me/ he wrote, * as being a little solemn 
in tone.' But this defect was soon rectified, and the result was 
so greatly admired that it led to many further commissions from 
the artist-editor. 

These were gratifying and encouraging results, but in Kate's 
opinion they were but the prizes of the successful artist-hack. 
Her name had not yet passed into the mouth of the town. 
Though she had drawn many charming pictures, she had not yet 
drawn the public. 

What was true of the public was true of the publishers. 
Though Messrs. Marcus Ward of Belfast had seen the possibilities 
that lay in her designs for valentines, Christmas cards, and the 
like, and had achieved a real success by their publication, Kate was 
but yet only the power behind the throne. She was the hidden 
mainspring of a clock with the maker's name upon the dial. 
Now all this was to be changed by a business arrangement, almost 
amounting to a partnership, in which she was to take her full 
share of the credit as well as of the spoil. 

The story will be best told in the words of the man who so 
boldly backed his opinion as to print a first edition of 20,000 
copies of a six-shilling book written and illustrated by a young 
lady who could hardly yet be said to have commanded anything 
like wide public approval. This was Mr. Edmund Evans. 

Mr. Edmund Evans was primarily a colour-printer ; his wood- 
engraving department was subsidiary. For the purposes of his 
business he owned a good many machines ; he had three houses 
full of them in the City, and he was sometimes puzzled to 
find work to keep them going, to do which is at the root of 
commercial economy and success in his business. He printed 
most of the * yellow-backs * of the time, covers for books as v^rell 
as for small magazines of a semi-religious character, working-men's 
magazines, and so forth, all with much colour-work in them. 
Mr. Evans also executed much high-class work of the kind, such 
as Doyle's Chronicles of England^ which had done much to make 
his reputation. Therefore, to fill up the spare time during 
which his machines would otherwise be idle, he began publishing 
the toy-books of Mr. Walter Crane, then those of Randolph 
Caldecott, and finally he turned his attention to Miss Kate 

It should be recorded to the credit of Mr. Evans that he 


The Triumph of ^ Under the Window ' 

excelled all others in the skill with which he produced his colour- 
effects with a small number of printings. Mr. John Greenaway, 
himself an expert in the preparation of blocks for Colour-printing, 
as well as an artist of much intelligence, used to declare that no 
other firm in London could come near the result that Edmund 
Evans would get with as few, say, as three colour -blocks, so 
wonderful was his ingenuity, so great his artistic taste, and so 
accurate his eye. 

Mr. Evans informs us : 

I had known John Greenaway, father of K. G.,^ since I was fourteen 
years of age. He was an assistant engraver to Ebenezer Landells,^ to 
whom I was apprenticed. I knew he was having one of his daughters 
educated for the musical profession and another for drawing. I had 
only seen engravings made from drawings on wood by 'K. G.' for 
Cassell Sc Co., as well as some Christmas cards by Marcus Ward & Co. 
from water-colour drawings of very quaint little figures of children. 
Very beautiful they were, for they were beautifully lithographed. 

About 1877-78 K. G.came to see us at Witley, bringing a collection of 
about fifty drawings she had made, with quaint verses written to them. 
I was fascinated with the originality of the drawings and the ideas of 
the verse, so I at once purchased them and determined to reproduce 
them in a little volume. The title Under the Window was selected 
afterwards from one of the first lines. At the suggestion of George 
Routledge & Sons I took the drawings and verses to Frederick Locker, 
the author oi London Lyrics^ to Mook over* the verses, not to rewrite 
them, but only to correct a few oddities which George Routledge & 
Sons did not quite like or understand. Loeker was very much taken 
with the drawings and the verses, and showed them to Mrs. Locker 
with quite a gusto ; he asked me many questions about her, and was 
evidently interested in what I told him of her. I do not think that he 
did anything to improve the verses, nor did K. G. herself. 

Locker soon made her acquaintance and introduced her into some 
very good society. She often stayed with them at Rowfant, Sussex, 
and also at Ci^mer. 

George Eliot was at the time staying at Witley. She called on 
us one day and saw the drawings and was much charmed with them. 
A little time afterwards I wrote to George Eliot to ask if she would 
write me a short story of, or about, children suitable for K. G. to 
illustrate. Her reason for refusing was interesting : — 

^ At * K. G.,' the reader should be reminded, MiM Greenaway was known to most 
of her friends, and even to many of her relations as well. 
^ The originator of Funch, 

57 8 

Kate Greenaway 

* The Hughts, Witley, 
October 22, 1879. 

' Dear Mr. Evans — It is not my way to write anything except from 
my own inward prompting. Your proposal does me honour, and I 
should feel much trust in the charming pencil of Miss Greenaway, 
but I could never say " I wijl write this or that " until I had myself 
felt the need to do it. . . . — Believe me, dear Mr. Evans, yours most 
sincerely, M. E. Lewes.' 

After I had engraved the blocks and colour-blocks, I printed the 
first edition of 20,000 copies, and was ridiculed by the publishers for 
risking such a large edition of a six-shilling book ; but the edition sold 
before I could reprint another edition ; in the meantime copies were 
sold at a premium. Reprinting kept on till 70,000 was reached.^ 

I volunteered to give K. G. one-third of the profit of this book. 
It was published in the autumn of 1879. We decided to publish The 
Birthday Book for Children in 1880. Miss Greenaway considered 
that she should have half the profits of all books we might do together 
in future, and that I should return to her the original drawings after 
I had paid her for them and reproduced them. To both these terms 
I willingly agreed.^ . . . Then came the Birthday Booky Mother 
Goose^ and part of A Day in a Child^s Life^ in 1881 ; Little Ann^ 
1883; the Language of Flowers y Kate Greenawafs Painting- Book^ 
and Mavor^s Spelling- Book^ 1884-85 ; Marigold Garden and J Apple 
Pie, 1886; The Queen of The Pirate hie and The Pied Piper of 
Hamelin, 1887 ; The Book ofGames, 1888 ; King Pepito, 1889. Besides 
the above and a certain number of smaller issues, minor works, and 
detached designs, the artist was responsible for an Almanack from 
1883 to 1897, with the sole exception of the year 1896. 

The books named above are those which we did together. 

There is a little story my daughter Lily tells of her tenderness 
towards animals. She was walking one day and came upon a stream 
with a rat sitting on a stone. Lily wished to startle it, and was about 
to throw a stone in the water, but K. G. exclaimed — * Oh, don't, Lily, 
perhaps it's ill ! * We all loved her. 

^ In addition there were French and German editions, which probably brought up 
the number to 100,000 copies. 

^ It should be understood, however — lest the strict facts of the arrangement mislead 
the reader — that the half- share royalty only became payable after the expenses of 
publication had been cleared off — that is to say, after the sale had passed a given number 
uf copies. Consequently, as certain of the books never reached the limit, K. G. only 
received payment for the use of the drawings, which were returned to her. Such 
failures, commercially speaking, were A Da^ in a ChHd*i Lifty the Calendars, and one 
or two more. It was found in practice that, except in rare cases, books with music 
were not successful. 


From a tvatet'CO/ow drawing in the possession of Mrs. y. St. G. ff^kitty. 

The Triumph of * Under the Window ' 

This interesting account of what is one of the most important 
events in Kate's life may be supplemented by the following 
charming sketch taken from an article written by Mrs. Edmund 
Evans at the request of the editor of the GirPs Own Paper^ 
shortly after her death. It was published on December 26, 1901, 
together with a photograph of the artist taken by Miss Lily 
Evans and four pen-and-ink drawings done by Kate Greenaway 
for the Evans children. Miss Lily Evans was Mr. Evans's second 
daughter and a special favourite with Kate Greenaway, who 
dedicated Mother Goose to ^Lily and Eddie' (Kate Greenaway's 
nephew), ^the two children she loved most in the world.' 

Kate Greenaway (wrote Mrs. Evans) had a very interesting 
personality, and was extremely fond of the country and of flowers, and 
could draw them beautifully, and always liked those best of a more 
simple form — not orchids nor begonias ; she loved daffodils and roses, 
and few things gave her more pleasure than a copse yellow with 
primroses. Her favourite time of year was when apple trees were in 
blossom ; she especially liked them when they were in the garden of 
a picturesque farm or cottage. One such cottage at Hambledon, 
Surrey, she particularly admired, where a green door had faded to a 
peacock blue. She liked only blue and white skies ; stormy effects 
gave her no pleasure. . . . ^ The sincerest form of flattery ' (imitation) 
annoyed her, and did her reputation harm, as her many imitators went 
beyond, in fact out-Kate-Greenawayed Kate Greenaway in their 
caricatures, and many people did not know one from the other. She 
herself was waiting in a bookseller's shop at Hastings, and a lady came 
in and asked for Kate Greenaway's books. The shopman spread a 
handful out before her. The lady asked, *Are those all by Kate 
Greenaway?' The man assured her they were. Kate Greenaway 
was n^ar enough to see that not one was her work. 

She had a very affectionate nature, very tender-hearted — seeing 
even an insect in pain wounded her. She could not tolerate flies 
caught in traps, or see a beetle or a spider killed. Seeing a mouse in 
a trap tempted her to set it free ; in fact, the *• cruelty of nature ' in 
the animal world quite troubled her. (She could not understand it 
or reconcile it with the goodness of God.^) Dogs and cats recognised 
this quality by showing their devotion and imposing on her good-nature. 
She would never even scold them. This was simply kindness — not 
indicating a weak nature. She was a decidedly strong-minded 

^ Thae words have been added in MS. by Mr. Bvana. 


Kate Greenaway 

Of Kate Greenaway 's letters Mrs. Evans writes : — 

I am sorry now I did not keep her letters. They were often very 
interesting and unlike ordinary people's, but when I had a great many 
it did not seem worth while, and I never do keep letters. As you 
know, she was so unassuming and homely, and liked our unostentatious 
way of living so much, it was difficult to realise she was a celebrated 

Here, however, is one which has escaped destruction : — 

Kate Greenaway to Mrs. Evans 


Dear Mrs. Evans — The flowers came quite safely. I am always 
so pleased when the postman brings the little box. How strange and 
beautiful the daffodil is — I never saw one like it before. Also thank 
W. for the snowdrops. 

The party was not very lively, only a few children. The songs 
sounded so well. The 12 Miss Pelicoes very funny, and the pro- 
cession song pretty. Also there was an sesthetic artist there — real 
genuine sort — who drank in the Elgin marbles for recreation. No 
wonder du Maurier hates them. 

The other day I heard I was sixty ! — to-day I hear I am making 
j(^200o a year ! 

I don't think you'd find it worth while to come up for the Dudley, 
I like to meet the people, of course ; they are very funny. I saw 

Mrs. the other day at the Old Masters' in a crimson velvet 

pelisse ; everybody stared and smiled. She is very pretty, but so much 
commoner than Mrs. . — With love, K. Greenaway. 

Of Under the JVindow^ which was published at the end of 
1878, it is no exaggeration to say that it was epoch-making; its 
popularity was such that Kate tasted the bitter-sweet experience — 
shared in our own time by Frederick Sandys in respect of his great 
skit on Millais's ^ Sir Isumbras at the Ford,' and by Mr. Brandon 
Thomas in respect of Charley* s Aunt — of finaing her work 
coolly appropriated by others. One — a lady of Twickenham — 
calmly gave herself out as the artist-author, explaining that she 
had preferred to issue her work under an assumed name. To 
enter into an elaborate description of the book would be super- 
fluous, for it still holds its pkce in every properly constituted 
children's library, and should be constantly taken out for renewed 
inspection. So, too, would it be superfluous to make extensive 
quotations from the eulogiums of the reviewers. We may content 


The Triumph of ^ Under the Window ' 

ourselves with the following prophecy from the Saturday Review^ 
which seems now to be within measure of its fulfilment. ^In 
time,' the writer says, ^the hands of children will wear away, and 
their pencils and paint-brushes de&ce Miss Kate Greenaway's 
beautiful, fantastic, and dainty work Under the Window. Probably 
some wise collector will lay up a little stock for future use while the 
impressions are in their first freshness. His treasure will come to 
be as valuable as that parcel of unbound and uncut Elzevirs which 
Mottley found in Hungary, and which, after filling the hearts of 
bibliophiles with joy for years, was burned by the Commune.' 

There are, however, one or two facts connected with the book 
which demand attention. In the first place, it must be borne in 
mind that from this moment Kate Greenaway's name became a 
household word, not only in Great Britain, but in a vast number 
of homes on the continents of Europe and America. In the 
second place, that now for the first time she was not hampered in 
her published work by adapting her fancy to the literary ideas of 
other people, but was inspired by subjects which came red-hot 
from the furnace of her own imagination. 

This is a matter of no little importance. It is clear that the 
ideal illustrator of a literary idea, if only the technical skill is not 
wanting, is the person to whose mind that idea first presents itself. 
In the mind of any other the conception is but a second-hand afiair, 
and but the reflection, more or less accurate, of the original, con- 
veyed on to the mental retina of the artist through the somewhat 
opaque medium of language. The writer alone knows exactly what 
he means and what he wants. His pencil may be unskilled, but 
it is nerved by the original thought. ' I wish to goodness I could 
put it upon paper myself,' said Barham to Bentley, writing about 
an illustration for the Mousquetaire^ even while Cruikshank and 
Leech were at his service. It is because Thackeray had the 
double gift that his drawings, although so weak in execution, yet 
so evidently imbued with the living literary inspiration, so greatly 
commend themselves to those who look for genuine sincerity of 
inspiration, and not only for beauty of composition and execution. 
That is why the world revelled in du Maurier's Peter Ibbetson and 
Trilby^ and why Blake's Songs of Innocence and Experience is one 
of the completest and most harmonious books in existence. 

What Blake did, Kate Greenaway was now enabled to do, in 
her own fashion, in Under the fVindow, She was expressing her own 
literary thoughts and at the same time treatinjg them pictorially. 


Kate Greenaway 

One word about her verses, of which more will be said later on. 
Alone they would probably not have attracted much serious attention, 
and doubtless would have met with criticism. For there are in 
them faults of scansion, rhythm, and rhyme which it is easy enough 
to reprobate. But their sincerity, gaiety, and feeling appealed 
to such unimpeachable judges as Frederick Locker and Mr. Austin 
Dobson, the latter of whom declares, ^She was very deficient in 
technique, but she had the root of the matter in her.' During 
the last months of her life she found much pleasure in composing 
many more of those charming little verses, of which examples will 
be found in a later portion of this book. 

Here is an amusing sample from Under the ff^ndow^ written 
for children : 

Five little sisters walking in a row ; 

Now, isn't that the best way for little girls to go ? 

Each had a round hat, each had a muff, 

And each had a new pelisse of soft green stuff. 

Five little marigolds standing in a row ; 
Now, isn't that the best way for marigolds to grow P 
Each with a green stalk, and all the five had got 
A bright yellow flower, and a new red pot. 

It must not be supposed that Kate had any illusions about her 
literary gifts, or that she placed her own productions on a par with 
those of others whose work she illustrated. But she preferred her 
liberty and found her pencil better inspired by her own pen than 
by the pens of others with whom she was called upon to col- 
laborate. Other verses were obviously cleverer and daintier than 
hers, but her own simple thoughts were more in harmony with 
her delightful little pictures. 

It was not only the critics but the public who acclaimed her, 
for she had got at the secret of the beauty and charm of child- 
hood, and the appeal was universal. As Mr, Lionel Robinson 
wrote : — 

The moment selected for striking this note was well chosen. 
Abroad and at home the claims of children were asserting themselves 
more loudly than ever. German and French artists had alike proved 
unequal to the task, notwithstanding the temporary popularity of L. 
Frdhlich, of Ludwig Richter, and, in a high degree, of Edouard Frire 
and others. Clever as many of these showed themselves, they failed 
to render the more transient graces of little children, whilst they were, 



From a loater-colow tirawmg in the possession cf Mrs. Arthur Severn, 


The Triumph of * Under the Window' 

with the exception of Frire, apparently indifferent to the bright 
surroundings and beauties of nature with which Miss Greenaway 
heightened the charm of her work. It is this absolute harmony 
between the figures and the landscape which makes her work so 
complete. Mr. Ruskin de- 
voted one of his lectures at ' — ■ — 
Oxford to the place occu- 
pied by Miss Greenawiy in 
modern arc, and bestowed 
upon her praise without ^ 
stint. ' Observe,' said he, 
' that what this impression- "" 
able person t/eet draw she 
draws as like as she can. It 
is true that the combination 
or composition of things is 
not what you see every day. 
You can't every day, for 
instance, see a baby thrown 
into a basket of roses ; but 
when she has once pleasantly (^ , 
invented that arrangement , ** " 
for you, baby is as like baby "* 
and rose as like rose as she 
can possibly draw them. • - 
And the beauty of them is On ■ Letter to Miu Violtt Dickinioa. 

in being like, they are blissful 

just in the degree that they are natural ; the fairy-land that she creates 
for you is not beyond the sky nor beneath the sea, but near you, even at 
your doors. She does but show you how to sec it, and how to cherish.' 

When the original drawings for Under the Window were 
exhibited at the Fine Art Society two years later, the critics vied 
with one another in their applause. Ruskin in particular exhausted 
the splendour of his vocabulary in his praise of their unaffected 
beauty, their sweetness and nalvet^, their delicacy of sentiment, 
subtlety of humour, and the exquisitcness of technique, and what 
he added to the artist privately has already been quoted here. 
Furthermore Mr. Austin Dobson wrote that 'since Stothard, no 
one has given us such a clear-eyed, soft-faced, happy-hearted child- 
hood i or so poetically " apprehended " the coy reticences, the 
simplicities, and the small solemnities of little people. Added 
to this, the old-world costume in which she usually elects to 
63 , 

Kate Greenaway 

clothe her characters lends an arch piquancy of contrast to their 
innocent rites and ceremonies. Her taste in tinting, too, is 
very sweet and springlike ; and there is a fresh, pure fragrance 
about all her pictures as of new-gathered nosegays.' 

Wherefore it is evident that the success was as deserved as it 
was instantaneous. Nor was it due only to the fortunate moment 
chosen for launching the book. There was at least one other 
felicitous circumstance : Miss Greenaway was exceptionally 
fortunate in her interpreter, who had brought colour-printing 
by means of wood blocks to a pitch of excellence never before 
attempted. A description, therefore, of the process is of excep- 
tional interest. The following account of the method is taken 
from notes supplied by Mr. Edmund Evans himself. 

In the first place, a photograph is taken and printed on the 
whitened surface of the wood from the original drawing in line. 
This is engraved as faithfully as possible, no notice being taken 
at this stage of colour. From the engraving thus made * transfers,' 
' sets ofF,' or ' proofs ' are pulled in dark brown or black ink. 
These, laid face downwards on the blocks prepared for the colour 
printing, which equal in number the colours to be used, are passed 
through the press. By this means the wet ink is transferred and 
set-ofr on to the blocks, and a number of facsimiles of the original 
drawing are ready for the engraver, who prepares for his work by 
painting-in, on each, that part of the tinting which is to be printed 
from that particular block. On one he paints in all the red that 
is to be used and engraves so much on that block, on the next 
all the blue that is to be used and engraves so much on that block, 
and so on until all the colours are represented, some of them over- 
lapping or superimposed where they have to cross and modify other 
colours. Then the engraver sets to work with his engraving until 
he has prepared a separate block for each colour. In theory of 
course a proof printed from each block should exactly reproauce 
the blue, red, and other colours used in the original picture, but, 
' alas,' as Mr. Evans says, * the eye, brain, and hand of the engraver 
are not up to the eye, brain, and hand of the painter,' so that the 
print suffers by comparison. No doubt the coloured inks can be 
ground and mixed as surely as by the painter on his palette, but the 
mechanical print must ever come short of the nerve-driven original. 
When all the proofs taken from the several blocks are pronounced 
satisfactory, a print is taken from the key block. Upon that is 
superimposed a print from the other blocks charged each with 


• See the pretty planet ! 

FloatiiiK sphere I 
Faintest breeze will fan it 
Far or near." 

Vroni a pen and water-colour drawing by Kate (ireeiiaway 
in the posvession of the Hon. (>erald Pon.sonby, being an 
illustration for Rhymes /or the Young Folk, by William 
.\.llin<2:hain (Cavsell & Co.), here reproduced in two inethixls 
(by permission of Messrs. Frederick Warne K: (\>.) for the 
sake of comparison. 

I {s>^ left). —Engraved on 8 woixi-blocks and printed by 
Mr. Kdmund Kvans. The brighter, yellower tone is 
adopted probably by subsequent direction of the artist. 

i (on right). — A true facsimile of the drawing, executed by 
the 'three-colour process.' — .A single large bubble w^as afterwards substituted by 
way of correction before publication, the poem which the 
drawing was to illustrate being entitled 'The nubl)lc.' 

The Triumph of ^ Under the Window* 

its properly coloured ink, the greatest care being taken to get the 
* register* correct — that is to say, that each block is printed 
accurately in its place upon the paper with relation to those which 
have gone before. From this it will be seen how important it is 
that the colours used should be as few as possible so as to keep 
within bounds the cost of engraving and to simplify the difficulties 
of printing. Of course, had Kate Greenaway worked in the 
twentieth century, the conditions would have been altogether 
different. Now coloured wood-engravings have been almost 
wholly superseded by the ' Three-Colour Process,' which owes its 
rise to the possibilities which have been found to lie in the use 
of filtering screens, bichromate of potash, and metal plates — 
possibilities of which full advantage has been taken in this 

Even with these advantages, we cannot entirely reproduce the 
daintiness and incisiveness of her drawing, the transparency and 
brilliancy of her colouring, the microscopic touch of the stipple, the 
delicacy of the greys, and the inexpressible charm of the whole. 
The three-colour process at its best is, after all, mechanical, and just 
fells short of giving ^the spider's touch, so delicately fine,' which 
'feek at each thread and lives along the line.' Near to perfection 
it has got, especially when dealing with full-coloured drawings, but 
it cannot be said that any one who has not seen the originals can 
estimate to the full the charm and daintiness of these pictures, which 
seem to have been blown rather than painted on to the paper. 
Bartolozzi with his clever graver doubtless improved the work of 
those for whom he acted as middleman, but it would have taken 
a greater than Bartolozzi to have bettered (except in the academic 
quality of the- drawing) the work of Kate Greenaway. In his 
' Lecture on Mrs. Allingham and Kate Greenaway ' in The Art of 
England (published by Mr. George Allen) Ruskin said : 

I may best indicate to you the grasp which the genius of Miss Kate 
Greenaway has taken upon the spirits of foreign lands, no less than her 
own, by translating the last paragraph of the entirely candid, and 
intimately observant, review of modern English art given by Monsieur 
Ernest Chesneau, in his small volume. La Peintun Anglaise. . . . 

He gives first a lovely passage (too long to introduce now) upon the 
gentleness of the satire of John Leech, as opposed to the bitter malignity 
of former caricature. Then he goes on: * The great softening of the 
English mind, so manifest already in John Leech, shows itself in a 
decisive manner by the enthusiasm with which the public have lately 

65 9 

Kate Greenaway 

received the designs of Mr. Walter Crane, Mr. Caldecott, and Miss 
Kate Greenaway. The two first-named artists began by addressing to 
children the stories of Perrault and of the Arabian Nights^ translated 
and adorned for them in a dazzling manner ; and, in the works of all 
these three artists, landscape plays an important part ; — familiar land- 
scape, vtry English, interpreted with a '^ bonhomie savante " ' (no trans- 
lating that), 'spiritual, decorative in the rarest sense — strange and 
precious adaptation of Etruscan art, Flemish and Japanese, reaching, 
together with the perfect interpretation of nature, to incomparable 
chords of colour harmony. These powers are found in the work of the 
three, but Miss Greenaway, with a profound sentiment of love for 
children, puts the child alone on the scene, companions him in all his 
solitudes, and shows the infantine nature in all its naTvet^, its gaucherie, 
its touching grace, its shy alarm, its discoveries, ravishments, embarrass- 
ments, and victories ; the stumblings of it in wintry ways, the en- 
chanted smiles of its spring-time, and all the history of its fond heart 
and guileless egoism. 

'From the honest but fierce laugh of the coarse Saxon, William 
Hogarth, to the delicious smile of Kate Greenaway, there has past a 
century and a half. Is it the same people which applauds to-day the 
sweet genius and tender malices of the one, and which applauded the 
bitter genius and slaughterous satire of the other ? After all, that is 
possible — the hatred of vice is only another manifestation of the 
love of innocence.* . . . 

I have brought with me to-day in the first place some examples 
of her pencil sketches in primary design. . . . You have here for 
consummate example, a dance of fairies under a mushroom, which she 
did under challenge to show me what fairies were like. ' They'll be 
very like children,' she said. I answered that I didn't mind, and 
should like to see them all the same ; — so here they are, with a dance, 
also, of two girlies, outside of a mushroom ; and I don't know whether 
the elfins or girls are the fairyfootedest : and one or two more subjects, 
which you may find out ; — but in all you will see that the line is 
ineffably tender and delicate, and can't in the least be represented by 
the lines of a woodcut.^ . . . 

So far of pure outline. Next, for the enrichment of it by colour. 
Monsieur Chesneau doubts if the charm of Miss Greenaway's work 
can be carried farther. I answer, with security, — ^yes, very much 
farther, and that in two directions : first, in her own method of design ; 
and secondly, the manner of its representation in printing. 

First, her own design has been greatly restricted by being too 

^ From a letter written in 1879 it will be seen that the heaviness of her line had 
before been a matter of complaint with him. 


^< Qv 


■7' «^ ■ 

h lit /KiussJoa r>fRm. tf. J. Lo/nc, F.S.A 

The Triumph of * Under the Window ' 

ornamental, or, in our modern phrase, decorative ;-— contracted into 
any corner of a Christmas card[, or stretched like an elastic band 
round the edges of an almanac. Now her art is much too good to be 
used merely for illumination ; it is essentially and perfectly that of 
true colour-picture, and that the most naive and delightful manner 
of picture, because, on the simplest terms, it comes nearest reality. 
No end of mischief has been done to modern art by the habit of 
running semi-pictorial illustration round the margins of ornamental 
volumes, and Miss Greenaway has been wasting her strength too 
sorrowfully in making the edges of her little birthday-books, and the 
like, glitter with unregarded gold, whereas her power should be con- 
centrated in the direct illustration of connected story, and her pictures 
should be made complete on the page, and far more realistic than 
decorative. There is no charm so enduring as that of the real re- 
presentation of any given scene ; her present designs are like living 
flowers flattened to go into an herbarium, and sometimes too pretty 
to be believed. We must ask her for more descriptive reality, for 
more convincing simplicity, and we must get her to organise a school 
of colourists by hand, who can absolutely facsimile her own first 

This is the second matter on which I have to insist. I bring with 
me to-day twelve of her original drawings, and have mounted beside 
them, good impressions of the published prints. 

I may heartily congratulate both the publishers and possessors of 
the book on the excellence of these ; yet if you examine them closely, 
you will find that the colour blocks of the print sometimes slip a little 
aside, so as to lose the precision of the drawing in important places ; 
and in many other respects better can be done, in at least a certain 
number of chosen copies. I must not, however, detain you to-day by 
entering into particulars in this matter. I am content to ask your 
sympathy in the endeavour, if I can prevail on the artist to under- 
take it. 

Only in respect to this and every other question of method in 
engraving, observe further that all the drawings I bring you to-day 
agree in one thing, — minuteness and delicacy of touch carried to its 
utmost limit, visible in its perfectness to the eyes of youth, but 
neither executed with a magnifying glass nor, except to aged eyes, 
needing one. Even I, at sixty-four, can see the essential qualities of 
the work without spectacles ; though only the youngest of my friends 
here can see, for example, Kate's fairy dance, perfectly, but they can 
with their own bright eyes. 

The vear 1878, which cave Under the Window to the world, 
also proauced Topo : A Tale about English Children in Italy y 


Kate Greenaway 

written by Miss Gertrude Blood, afterwards Lady Colin Campbell, 
who adopted for the occasion the pen-name of ^ G. £. Brunefille,' 
'with 44 pen-and-ink Illustrations by Kate Greenaway.' It 
was published by Messrs. Marcus Ward & Co. For the sake 
of the collector, it may be said that the first issue was printed on 
thick and a subsequent issue on thin paper. The design in black 
and gold on the green cloth cover was also from a drawing by 
Kate Greenaway. The full-page frontispiece is printed in green 
and gold ; the rest of the illustrations are wood-engravings incor- 
porated in the text. Of these the little girl on p« 17, the singing 
boy and smallest singing girl on p. 24, the little boy in his night- 
shirt on p. 31, and the choir boys on p. 45 are admirable, 
notwithstanding the poor printing. Apart from these, the illus- 
trations are of no great account. Indeed, some of the figures are 
very indifferent, more particularly the middle of the three children 
on p. 52, which not only is very poor in the legs and feet (a 
constant difficulty with Kate through life), but is curiously faulty 
in its relation to the leading figure. 

Concerning the book Lady Colin Campbell has supplied the 
following information : — 

The child's book, Topo : or Summer Life in Itaiy^ which she illus- 
trated, I wrote when I was only fifteen, so of course there was no need 
for her to write to a child-author. The chief point of interest is not 
only the beauty of the drawings, but also that it was the first book she 
had ever illustrated ^ — before that she had only done calendars and 
Christmas cards, etc., for Marcus Ward & Co. Marcus Ward & Co. 
agreed to pay me ^^5 for the book, and they were so pleased with it 
that they sent me jC^o* which I should think was the only case on 
record of a publisher doubling the price in an author's favour without 
being asked. 

For the illustrations, Mr. William Marcus Ward tells us, Kate 
Greenaway made innumerable sketches — was indeed tireless in her 
determination to do the best for her text. These preliminary 
designs were thrown off with amazing rapidity, ^almost as quickly 
as they could be talked about.' Those rejected she would ruth- 
lessly tear up or beg him to do so. For the donkey she made at 
least a dozen drawings, but with no success, and finally had to 
submit to the mortification of the animal being drawn by some 
one else. 

^ The reader wiU tee that this is a misconception, as Fairy Gifts preceded it by four 


The Triumph of ^ Under the Window ' 

This year Kate was represented at the Academy by her 
* Little Girl with Doll,' while two of her pictures at the Dudley 
Gallery sold for fifteen guineas and fifteen pounds respectively, 
her gross takings from this source being nearly fifty pounds. Now, 
too, began her connection with the Scribners, for whom she 
worked for several years. From this time forward her accounts, 
to those who enjoy figures, make very cheerful reading. In 
1878 she earned nearly ^^550, in 1879 over ^800, in 1880 
rather more, and in 1801 over /1500, the enormous rise being 
due to the accumulating royalties on the books engraved and 
printed by Mr. Evans and published by George Routledge & 

At this time Randolph Caldecott, born in the same year 
as Kate Greenaway, was at once her rival in the affections of the 
young people of the 'seventies and 'eighties, her competitor on the 

X X I 

>. \ 



Skit in thx Kats Grunaway Manner by Randolph Caldecott. 

publishers' prospectuses, and her admiring friend and helpful 
comrade. A story is told of him that one morning, staying with 
her in the same country-house (probably that of Mr. and Mrs. 
Locker-Lampson), he came down declaring that he had lost all 
power of working in his own style and everything came out Kate 
Greenaways. He then produced a telling little skit on her 
manner which so delighted Kate Greenaway that she preserved it 
till her dying day. 


Kate Greenaway 

Randolph Caldecott to Kate Greenaway 

46, Gmat Russell Strkxt, Bloomsbuit, 
September 30, 1878. 

Dear Miss Greenaway — The two children of whom I spoke were 
recommended to me by a Mr. Robertson of 6, Britten Street, Chelsea, 
himself a model. He seemed to say that he had the power of causing 
the children to sit. One is a * Saxon boy ' of six years old^-called 
A. Frost ; the other is a * vivacious girl of an auburn colour ' entitled 
Minnie Frost. 

I do not know anything of Mr. Robertson either as a professional 
model or as a private gentleman. He has called on me twice for a few 
minutes at each time. 

The brown ink of which I discoursed will not, when thickly used 
with a pen, keep itself entirely together under the overwhelming 
influence of a brush with water-colour. I have found this out to-day. 
But the liquid Indian ink used for lines will stand any number of 
damp assaults. This I know from much experience. — Believe me, 
yours very truly, R. Caldecott. 

P.S. — I hope the above information may be of use to you. — R. C. 

On the death of Caldecott, Miss Greenaway wrote as follows 
to Mrs. Severn : — 

50, Frognal, Ham?stia]>, N.W^ 
ijrk Feb. 1886. 

Dearest Joanie — . . . Isn't it sad about Mr. Caldecott ? The last 
I heard he was so much better — and now— dead. It looks quite horrid 
to see the black-bordered card with his books in the shop windows — 
it feels horrid to want to sell his books somehow, just yet. I'm very 
sorry. . . . — Good-bye, with dearest love, Katie. 

The good understanding between the two artists was probably 
known outside their own circle, and strange deductions were 
occasionally drawn. One day a gentleman said mysteriously to 
Mr. Rider, the head of the firm who built Miss Greenaway's house 
at Frognal : 

' You know, I suppose, who Kate Greenaway really is ? ' 

* Perfectly,' said Mr. Rider. 

^ She's not Kate Greenaway at all,' said his informant, con- 
fidentially, ^shis Mrs. Randolph Caldecott, I chance to know 
that she married Randolph Caldecott ' \ and Mr. Rider utterly 


The Triumph of ^ Under the Window ' 

failed to establish the truth in the mind of his visitor, for it was a 
belief held by not a few. 

On the other hand, with Mr. Walter Crane — with whose 
name her own was so often linked in the public mind, as well 
as in publishers' announcements — Kate Greenaway had but 
the slightest acquaintance, though for his work she entertained 
unbounded admiration. Air. Crane informs us : 

I only met her on one occasion, and that was at a play given in 
Argyll Street, wherein Tennyson's second son, Lionel Tennyson, 
appeared, and in which the Lockers were interested. 

My impressions of Kate Greenaway were of a very quiet and 
unobtrusive personality, probably quietly observant, self-contained, 
reserved, with a certain shrewdness. She was small and plainly 

In those days it was usual to bracket Kate Greenaway, Randolph 
Caldecott, and myself together as special children's -book providers, 
ignoring very great differences of style and aims (ignoring, too, the 
fact that I began my series of picture-books more than ten years 
before either Caldecott or Miss Greenaway were known to the public). 
Both those artists, however, were, I fancy, much more commercially 
successful than I was, as, when 1 began, children's-book designs were 
very poorly paid. I was glad to be of some service to Caldecott when 
he started his series through Messrs. Routledge in 1878. My Babj*s 
Opera was published in 1877 by the same house, and proved so suc- 
cessful that the publishers wanted me to follow it up immediately with 
another. Being engaged in other work, I did not see my way to this ; 
but the publishers were equal to the emergency, for I was rather 
startled about Christmas to see Kate Greenaway's first book. Under the 
Window^ announced by them as 'companion volume' to The Bahfs 
Opera, To this I naturally objected as misleading, and the advertise- 
ment was withdrawn. 

The grace and charm of her children and young girls were quickly 
recognised, and her treatment of quaint early nineteenth-century 
costume, prim gardens, and the child-like spirit of her designs in 
an old-world atmosphere, though touched with conscious modern 
' aestheticism,' captivated the public in a remarkable way. 

May I confess that (for me at least) I think she overdid the big 
bonnet rather, and at one time her little people were almost lost in 
their clothes ? However, one saw this in the actual life of the day. 

I remember Miss Greenaway used to exhibit drawings at the old 
Dudley Gallery general exhibition, but her larger, more elaborated 
studies were not so happy as her book designs in simple outline taste- 
fully tinted. 


Kate Greenaway 

Mr. Walter Crane speaks here of their difference of aims. 
Those who recall the public discussion between Mr. Crane and 
Professor Kuslcin on the subject of children's books will remember 
that what the former had greatly in mind was a special appeal to 
the eyes and artistic taste of the little ones : his purpose was in a 
measure educative. ICate Greenaway, on the other hand, sought 
for nothing but their unthinking delight ; and whether her aim 
was higher or lower than that of her fellow-artist, there was no 
doubt of the esteem and affection in which she was now held by 
all little people as well as by their elders. 

Book-plilc (tctigneil for Oodbey Locker-Limpioa. 




The year 1846 — the birth-year of both Kate Greenaway and 
Randolph Caldecott — marked also the genesis of the Christmas card. 
What was in the first instance a pretty thought and dainty whim, 
by its twenty-fifth year had become a craze, and has now, another 
quarter of a century later, fallen into a tenacious and somewhat 
erratic dotage. The first example of which there is any trace 
was a private card designed by J. C. Horsley, R.A., for Sir 
Henry Cole, of the South Kensington Museum, and it proved to 
be the forerunner of at least two hundred thousand others that 
were placed upon the market before 1 894 in England alone. For 
five-and-twenty years the designing of them was practically con- 
fined to the journeyman artist, who rang the changes on the 
Christmas Plum-pudding, the Holly and Mistletoe, and on 
occasional religious reference, with little originality and less art. 
Later on all that was changed. About 1878 certain manu- 
facturers, printers, and publishers recognised the possibilities 
which lay in an improved type of production, with the result 
that in 1882 so great was the boom that ^one firm alone paid in 
a single year no less a sum than seven thousand pounds for 
original drawings ' for these cards.^ 

Thereupon arose the Christmas card collector, who vaunted his 
possessions even as the stamp collector or book-plate collector of 

^ See * Christmas Cards aad their Designers, by Gleeson White.' Extra number of 
the Studio, 1S94, which is full of interesting information on the subject. 

73 'o 

Kate Greenaway 

to-day takes pride in his. One of the most ardent is credited with 
the ownership of 700 volumes, weighing together between six and 
seven tons and containing 163,000 varieties ! The decade 1878 
to 1888 was his happy hunting-time, for it was then that not 
only were book-illustrators of the highest repute induced to follow 
an employment which up to that time had been looked upon as 
merely perfunctory, but established artists. Royal Academicians 
and others who were popularly supposed to work only for Art's 
sake and not at all for that of Commerce, vied with one another 
for the rewards which waited upon artistic success in the new 

Kate Greenaway had begun the designing of Christmas cards 
anonymously in the pre-colTector days, and her earliest produc- 
tions, which were no doubt an advance upon most of those which 
preceded them, are nevertheless interesting rather as curiosities than 
as works of art. In her valentines she had adopted the slashed 
doublet and buskin convention ; but the Christmas card was to 
prove her triumph. Not that she shook herself free from her 
trammels all at once ; but signs of grace quickly appeared, and 
the year 1878 found her working on original lines in the front 
rank of the artists who were taking advantage of the new 
departure. Before this date her cards seem never to have 
been signed, and are not easy to identify, as they lack the 
distinctive characteristics of her later work. As time goes on 
they bear, if not the initak * K. G.,* at any rate the unquestion- 
able evidence of her style. Doubtless the difficulty of identifying 
her early work is due chiefly to the hct that the designs, mainly 
flower pieces, were only sketched out by her and were given into 
the hands of more experienced draughtsmen to be finished. 
What was most noticeable in her work at this period was the 
remarkable ease with which she adapted her designs to the spaces 
they were to occupy, whether oblongs, uprights, circles, or ovals. 

By this year she was, as Under the IVindow proves, in her 
own way ^drawing her inspiration from classic forms unfettered 
by classic conventions,' and her very original designs, coming at 
a time when the vogue was at its height, went no little way 
towards increasing her popularity. From this time many of her 
Christmas cards are well worthy the notice of the collector of 
beautiful things ; and the fact that her work, done with a single 
eye to this mode of publication, grew rarer and rarer as time 
went on gives them the adventitious value of scarcity which 


From iifater-colour drtnuings in the possession ofW. Marcus Ward^ Es^. 

Christmas Cards and Books 

sharpens the appetite for acquisition. It is true that Christmas 
cards bearing her signature continued to appear until late into the 
'nineties, but these were usually designs made for her boolcs and 
afterwards appropriated to other uses. Those of her best period 
arc fully entitled to rank amongst the Art produces of the time. 
These were years when Christmas cards were Christmas cards, 
designed by Mr. Marcus Stone, R.A., Mr. G. D. Leslie, 
R.A., Mr. J. Sant, R.A., Mr. W. F. Yeames, R.A., H. Stacy 
Marks, R.A., J. C. Herbert, R.A., and Sir Edward Poynter, 
the present President of the Royal Academy. They had not yet 
developed, as now, into anything from the counterfeit present- 
ment of an old boot, or a cigar-end, to the EncycUpadia 
BritannUa. As Gleeson White wrote, with genuine indignation, 
in 1 89+- 

The msus of recent cards, with few notable exceptions, are merely 
bric-i-brac, and of no more intrinsic merit as to design or colour than 
half the superfluous trifles of the ' fancy emporium,' the articles dt Paris 
in oxidised metal, rococo, gilt plush, and ormolu, which fill the 
windows of our best and worst shopping streets, and in debased 
imitations overflow the baskets on the pave- 
ments outside cheap drapery stores. 

Wherefore, to turn back from these to 
the work of Kate Greenaway at the end 
of the 'seventies and beginning of the 
'eighties is to recognise something of a 

The little drawings of sprites, gnomes, 
and fairies which, as has been related, 
attracted the attention of the Rev. W. J. 
Loftie and of Messrs. Marcus Ward, in 
Miss Greenaway's first- black-and-white 
exhibition at the Dudley Gallery, and - 
found their way into the People's Afagaxine^ 
were indirectly responsible for at least a 
hundred separate designs from her brush, 

all of them reflecting equal credit on the Eatlx Sketch for Cfariitoiu 
artist and the firm which reproduced them. '^'''■ 

Some idea of the importance of the output of this house may be 
gathered from the fact that in 1884 a collection of drawings, done 
in the main for their Christmas cards, was sold by : 

Kate Greenaway 

Messrs. Fosters' Rooms for ^1,728 : I2S.^ In this as in every 
other field of her work she received the sincerest but to her 
the most annoying kind of flattery. For example, in i88d 
an important house offered ^^500 in prizes for Christmas card 
designs, with Sir Coutts Lindsay, Stacy Marks, R.A., and G. H. 
Boughton, R.A., as judges ; and one of the prizes fell to ' K. 
Terrell, for designs after the style of Kate Greenavray.' The 
sale of these Christmas cards ran literally into millions; and 
when it is remembered that probably not more than three were 
designed then for three thousand pictorial postcards put forth to- 
day, the prodigious popular success of them can easily be realised. 
These cards, it should be added, were all produced by chromo- 
lithographv, each one needing, on the average, twelve stones. 

In dealing with the iconographies of ^ the work of certain artists 
of importance,' who were represented in the great decade of 
Christmas card production by more than a single set of cards, 
Gleeson White rightly accorded to Kate Greenaway the premier 
place, and wrote : 

Miss Kate Greenaway has preserved no complete set of her own 
designs — nor have her publishers : hence collectors must needs 
exercise their ingenuity to discover which of the many unsigned cards 
that appear to be hers are genuine and which are imitations. After 
the success of her first popular series (issued, as were the majority, by 
Marcus Ward), it is easy enough to discard the too faithful disciples 
who never once caught her peculiar charm. But in the earlier of hers, 
when her manner was less pronounced, even the publishers are not 
always absolutely certain regarding the authorship of several designs. ^ 

^ At this sale Kate Greenaway's illustrations to Topo fetched — after the copyright 
had been used — 35 guineas \ whilst others of her pictures sold were 'Three Innocents,' 
12 guineas; *My Lady and her Pages/ 23 guineas; *The Seasons/ 17 guineas; 
'The Time of Roses/ 18 guineas ; * On the Road to the Ball,' and *The Fancy Dress 
Ball,' £z% \ and * My Lord's Page and my Lady's Maid/ 13 guineas. 

^ 'Those indisputably by Miss Greenaway/ he proceeds, 'include : a set of children, 
1878 J another set, a Page in Red, with a cup, etc. ; children by ponds ; a set of little 
people in initial letters ; a set of damsels with muffs, and lads in ulsters ; another set 
of four initials ; a Red Riding Hood set ; an oblong set, with processions of little people ; 
a tiny set of three ; an upright set of three single figures ; a set of heads ; and a set of 
" Coachmen.*' To these may be added the Calendars published by Marcus Ward, as 
well as the annual " Kate Greenaway*s Almanack," published by Geo. Routledge 8c Sons ; 
a set in circular panels on small cards, published by Goodall ; a set, " The Four Seasons" ; 
also a calendar with four designs issued separately as cards, and a few early cards published 
by Marcus Ward. 

' Without very minute and tedious detail, it is not possible to identify even these in 
written descriptions ; but, unless collectors have at least as many sets (usually four in 


Christmas Cards and Books 

But this section of her work, important though it was in the 
early development of the Kate Greenaway we know, and inter- 
esting though it is to the collector of her work, was merely a 
by-path in the direction she was travelling. She was now, in 
truth, on the high-road to &me and success. The next year 
(1879) she was hard at work on her Birthday Booky a duodecimo 
volume with verses by Mrs. Sale Barker. It was published 
in 1880, and 128,000 £.nglish, 13,500 French, and 8,500 German 
copies were placed on the market. For the 382 tiny drawings, 
370 of which were minute uncoloured figures, she received 
^^151: I OS., whilst the royalties (not, of course, received all at 
once) exceeded ^1,100.^ Every day had its own delightful little 
pictorial conceit, and each month had a full page in colour in 
her happiest manner. ^ Good Evans I ' exclaimed a perfectly 
respectable newspaper at the sight of them. 

Later on, at Mr. Evans's suggestion, Kate Greenaway coloured 
a certain number of the little wood-engravings, with the idea or 
publishing them in a separate volume. From these Mr. Evans 
engraved the colour blocks and bound up a few copies, but no 
title was decided upon, and the book was never even offered to 
the publishers. Shoidd one of these little proof copies ever come 
into the sale-room, some lively bidding may be looked for. 

But perhaps the most interesting thing connected with the 
Birthday Book is the feet, which we learn from Mr. Graham 
Balfour, that Robert Louis Stevenson was first prompted by it 
to try his hand at those charming verses for children which were 
afterwards published in the Child* s Garden of Verse. * Louis 
took the Birthday Book up one day,* says Mr. Balfour, *and 
saying, " These are rather nice rhymes, and I don't think they 
would be very difficult to do," proceeded to try his hand.' 

In this year also Miss Greenaway was commissioned by 
Messrs. Macmillan & Co. to illustrate a new edition of Miss 
Yonge's novels. But after finishing four drawings for the Heir 
of Redclyffe and three for Heartsease^ she threw up the task. She 
recognised at the end that she was not entirely competent to carry 
out such work, as she had declared from the beginning her extreme 

each series) as I have noted, they may still be certain that the most prized section of 
their collection is incomplete. How many more can be traced it would be pleasant to 

^ Of these little drawings in pen-and-ink, many of them scarcely more than an inch 
high, 292 have lately been offered for sale by a London west-end bookseller, prettily 
mounted on pages, in an elaborately-bound morocco-covered box, for the sum of ;^300. 


Kate Greenaway 

indisposition to enter upon it. The drawings are capital, but 
hardly appropriate, and excellently as they were cut on wood by 
Swain, they failed of their effect. For the young man in these 
drawings ICate impressed her brother John as model ; and her 
father is to be recognised in the frontispiece, in the figure of Percy 
holding his cherished umbrella over the person of Theodora. 

For the same firm Kate also drew, as has been said, a delightful 
frontispiece for Amateur Theatricals^ by Mr. Walter Herries Pollock 
and Lady Pollock in the *Art at Home Series,* edited by the 
Rev. W. J. Loftie. Other drawings appeared in St. NicholaSy 
among which should be mentioned illustrations to Tom Hughes' 
* Beating the Bounds,' ' Children's Day in St. Paul's,' and Mrs. 
Dodge's ' Calling the Flowers,' ^ The Little Big Woman and the 
Big Little Girl,' and * Seeing is Believing.' 

The drawing called 'Misses,' which Kate sent this year to 
the Royal Academy, was less attractive to some than its foregoers. 
Fun fixed upon its title in a critical couplet in the course ot 
a very cutting rhyming review of the exhibition entitled 'The 
Budget at Burlington House,' and proceeded : 

A picture by Miss Greenaway (we scarcely like a bit of it] 
Is rightly titled ' Misses,' for she hasn't made a hit of it. 

The popular interest in Miss Greenaway then and thence- 
forward may be partly gauged by the great sheaf of applications 
for biographical information addressed to her by the editors of 
various magazines, found among her papers. But she hated 
publicity at all times. Especially did she fear and detest the^ 
attentions of interviewers, and she did her best to escape them. 
In a letter of a later date to Miss Lily Evans she says : 

My mind is dull to-night. I feel like what I was described in 
one of the notices of the P.V. [Private View], as a gentle, bespectacled, 
/97/V^/f-aged lady garbed in black. Somehow it sounds as if I was like 
a little mouse. I don't feel gentle at all. See what it is to grow old ! 
I have passed a time avoiding interviewers — no wonder they take 
revenge ! 

And when Herr Emil Hannover sought to write a critical and 
personal study on the artist, he received, as he records, a note 
from her in which she writes with characteristic reserve and 
dignity : 

You must wait till I am dead ; till then I wish to live my life 
privately — like an English gentlewoman. 


Christmas Cards and Books 

Publishers, too, vied with one another in seeking her service^ 
and a bare list of commissions offered but not taken in the years 
immediately succeeding would fill pages of this book. Indeed, it 
we may judge from her correspondence, every amateur who wrote 
a fairy story or a child's book or a book of verses, and wished to 
float it on the sea of her popularity, applied to her to illustrate 
it. One of them thinks that the 'kind praise received from 
various editors' should be sufficient recommendation. Another 
flourishes ' seven small children.' Another appeal to her charity 
and generosity is from a clergyman's wife i she is in very delicate 
health, her income does not permit of her doing the things 
which her medical man tells her would greatly benent her, and so 
on, and she would be so much obliged if Miss Greenaway would 
make her verses saleable by illustrating them. Pathetic requests 
of this sort must have affected her tender heart as deeply as 
Thackeray's ' Thorns in the Cushion ' touched his. 

Another, a German composer, puts her verses to music, and 
with a sense of morality about on a par with his English writes, in 
the strain well known to successful British authors : 

' In Germany every composer has a right over publishing each song 
by composition without paying any honorary to the poet, therefor the 
editor would not be obliged to hesitate in publishing your songs in the 
German translation with melodies. But since it is of importance for 
me that my composition ^hojind a spreading in England^* etc. etc., he 
offers *one hundred mark Lf 5] for twelve of your poems.* 

It need hardly be said that to this half-threat, half-insult Kate 
made no response. 

Further evidence of Miss Greena way's vogue at this time may 
be gathered from information which Mr. J. Russell Endean has 
been good enough to provide. He says that shortly after the issue 
of Under the Window^ Herr Fischer, of the Roval and Imperial 
Porcelain Majolica Manufactory, Buda Pesth, snowed him half- 
a-dozen employ^ with a copy of the book lying before each of 
them, at work in the artist's atelier, copying the illustrations upon 
china plates which had been twice fired, line for line, size for size, 
and group for group. 

To this Herr Fischer himself adds : * It is a fact that Kate 
Greenaway was copied in my factory, and I can certainly further 
affirm that all the books which appeared in the 'eighties were 
used, and large business was done with the pictures.' 


Kate Greenaway 

This annexation of copyright British designs by German 
china manufacturers, however, is in no way unusual. As we write 
these lines there is brought before us an excellent but wholly un- 
authorised reproduction upon a porcelain vase decorated with 
one of Mr. C. Wilhelm's beautiful drawings of dainty animated 
flowers, a design in which Kate Greenaway would assuredly have 

H. Stacy Marks, R.A., it has been said, was one of Miss 
Greenaway's most valued and helpful friends. The letters of this 
year that follow show how sincere and kind he was, and how 
candid a critic. A constant visitor and adviser, and an ardent 
admirer of her work from early years, he did more than any one to 
encourage her, to foster her genius, and to bring her into notice. 
Always seeking eagerly for her criticism of his own work, he 
was not sparing in his kindly comments on hers. This he held to 
be not only a duty but, in a sense, a necessity, for he felt that 
she must justify the advice he had given her to proceed along the 
path she had discovered for herself, when others, declaring she 
was blundering into failure, were loudly conjuring her to be more 
conventional, and to suppress her charming individuality. 

H. Stacy Marks, R.A., to Kate Greenaway 

October 22, 1879. 

Dear Miss Greenaway — Very many thanks for your very pretty 
and charming book,^ which has afforded me and my household much 
pleasure. Where so many designs are delightful, it seems hard to 
select any special one, but I think, as a happy method of filling up a 
page, the girls with the shuttlecocks bears the palm ; and how useful 
is the verse between ! [p. 33]. 

I like page 41 for its naive defiance of all rules of composition, 
and pages 23 and 47 are very sweet. 

I am not going to be * severe,' but I must ask you not to repeat 
those funny little black shadows under the feet of your figures — looking 
in some places like spurs, in others like tadpoles, in others like short 
stilts. yUe cat and children on page 53 for the last, page 39 for 
the tadpoles, and pages 10 and 30 for spurs. Why you have done this 
(much to the detriment of the dravrings) in special instances and not 
in others I can't see. I will only find another fault — the drawing of 

^ Under the fFlndow, 


From a water-colour drawing in the pouession of Harry y, f^dtck, Eiq. 

H. Stacy Marks, R.A. 

^^feet on page 31 — the tallest girl's arc very funny, but all are queer. 
A cast of any foot placed a little below the level of the eye would 
teach you how to foreshorten feet better. 

There, I have done ! But I know you well enough to feel assured 
that you would not be content with unqualified praise, and that you 
are grateful for a little honest criticism. 

Don't bother about painting too much. You have a lay of your 
own, and do your best to cultivate it. 

Think of the large number of people you charm and delight by 
these designs compared with those who can afford to buy paintings. 
You have a special gift and it is your duty in every sense to make 
the most of it. 

By the way, did you write the verses also ? If so, there is another 
feather for your cap, for I know how difficult it is to write verses for 

I hope I have not sermonised too much, and thanking you once 
more for your pleasant, happy book, to which I shall turn again and 
again, I am, faithfully yours, H. S. Marks. 

H. Stacy Marks to Kate Grebnaway 

November 3, 1879. 

... Mr. Ruskin dined here on Thursday last, and spoke in 
high terms of your feeling for children, etc. I think it not unlikely 
that you may have a letter from him soon. 

One more word of advice — although I almost believe you have too 
much common-sense to need it— don't let any success or praise make 
you puffed up or conceited, but keep humble and try to perfect your- 
self more in your art each day — and never sell your independence by 
hasty or badly considered work. 

I have seen so many spoiled by success that I raise my warning 
voice to you. 

And sure enough before three months were out Mr. Ruskin 
did make it his business to write and give her shrewd and 
humorous advice. The first letter is dated 1879, but that 
which follows it shows that this is a mistake : like a great many 
other people, he found it hard to adopt a new date at the beginning 
of a new year. Ruskin and Kate Greenaway, whose friendship 
vi^s soon to ripen into a happy intimacy, shared by his household, 
did not meet face to face until 1882. He writes in his more 
fantastic and playful vein. 

81 II 

Kate Greenaway 

John Ruskin to Kate Greenaway 

Bkantwood, Coniston, 
Jan» Stk, 1879 [*^ mistake for 1880]. 

My dear Miss Greenaway — I lay awake half (no a quarter) of 
last night thinking of the hundred things I want to say to you-and 
never shall get said !-and I'm giddy and weary-and now can't say even 
half or a quarter of one out of the hundred. They're about you-and 
your gifts-and your graces-and your fancies-and your-yes-perhaps one 
or two little tiny faults :-and about other people-children, and grey- 
haired, and what you could do for them-if you once made up your 
mind for whom you would do it. For children on/y for instance ?-or 
for old people, me for instance-and ^children and old people- whether 
for those of 1 8 80-only-or of 1 8-8-9- lo-ii -12-20-0-0—0 — °> ^^^• 
etc. etc. Or more simply annual or perennial. 

Well, of the thousand things-it was nearer a thousand than a 
hundred-this is anyhow the first. Will you please tell me whether you 
can only draw these things out of your head-or could, if you chose, draw 
them with the necessary modifications from nature ? For instance- 
Down in Kent the other day I saw many more lovely farm-houses- 
many more pretty landscapcs-than any in your book. But the farms 
had, perhaps, a steam-engine in the yard-the landscapes a railroad 
in the valley. Now, do you never want to draw such houses and 
places, as they used to be, and might be ? 

That's No. I . 

No. 2 of the thousand. 

Do you only draw pretty children out of your head ? In my 
parish school there are at least twenty prettier than any in your book- 
but they are in costumes neither graceful nor comic-they are not like 
blue china-they are not like mushrooms-they are like-very ill-dressed 
Angels. Could you draw groups of these as they are ? 

No. 3 of the thousand. 

Did you ever see a book called Flitters, Tatters, and the Councillor ? * 

No. 4 of the thousand. 

Do you ever see the blue sky ? and when you do, do you like it ? 

No. 5. 

Is a witch's ride on a broomstick^ the only chivalry you think 
it desirable to remind the glorious Nineteenth Century of? 

No. 6. — Do you believe in Fairies ? 

No. 7. — In ghosts ? 

No. 8. — In Principalities or Powers ? 

' By Miss LafFan, author of Bauhie Clarke (Blackwood, 1880). 
2 See Under the fVindffw, p. 35, 


John Ruskin 

No. 9. — In Heaven ? 

No. 10. — In-Any where else ? 

No. 1 1 . — Did you ever see Chart res Cathedral ? 

No. 12. — Did you ever study, there or elsewhere, thirteenth 
century glass ? 

No. 13. — Do you ever go to the MS. room of the British Museum ? 

No. 14. — Heavy outline will not go with strong colour-but if so, do 
you never intend to draw with delicate outline ? 

No. 15. — ^Will you please forgive me-and tell me-some of those 
things I've asked ? — Ever gratefully yours, J. Ruskin. 

To this letter Miss Greenaway responded at once, and he 
writes again : — 

John Ruskin to Kate Greenaway 

Brantwooo, CoNirroN, 
Jan. i$tk, 1880. 

Dear Miss Greenaway — How delightful of you to answer all my 
questions !-and to read Fors ! I never dreamed you were one of my 
readers — and I had rather you read that than anything else of mine, and 
rather you read it than anybody else. 

I am so delighted also with your really liking blue sky-and those 
actual cottages, and that you've never been abroad. And that's all I 
can say to-day, but only this, that I think from what you tell me, you 
will feel with me, in my wanting you to try the experiment of re- 
presenting any actual piece of nature (however little) as it really is, yet 
in the modified harmony of colour necessary for printing-making a 
simple study first as an ordinary water-colour sketch, and then trans- 
lating it into outline and the few advisable tints, so as to be able to 
say— The sun was in or out,-it was here, or there, and the gown, or 
the paling, was of this colour on one side, and of that on the other. 

I believe your lovely design and grouping will come out all the 
brighter and richer for such exercise. And then-when the question 
of absolute translation is once answered, that of conventional change 
may be met on its separate terms, securely. — Ever gratefully yours, 

J. Ruskin. 

John Ruskin to Kate Greenaway 

Brantwood, Coniston, 
Dec. ytk, /80. 

Dear Miss Greenaway — I have just got home and find the lovely 
little book and the drawing ! I had carried your letter in the safest 


Kate Greenaway 

recess of my desk through all the cathedral towns in Picard7,-thin Ic- 
ing every day to get away for home (Now is there any little misery 
of life worse than a hair in one's best pen ?), and to see my treasure, 
and I never got away ! and now what an ungrateful wretch you muse 
think me ! 

But-alas-do you know you have done me more grief than good 
for the moment ? The drawing is so boundlessly more beautiful than 
the woodcut that I shall have no peace of mind till I've come to see 
you and seen some more drawings, and told you-face to &ce-what a 
great and blessed gift you have-too great, in the ease of it, for you to 
feel yourself. 

These books are lovely things but, as far as I can guess, from look- 
ing at this drawing, your proper work would be in glass painting— 
where your own touch, your own colour, would be safe for ever,-seen, 
in sacred places, by multitudes-copied, by others, for story books-but 
your whole strength put in pure first perfectness on the enduring 

Have you ever thought of this ? 

Please tell me if you get this note. 1 am so ashamed of not 
writing before. — Ever your grateful and devoted J. Ruskin. 

John Ruskin to Kate Grbenaway 

BftANTwooo, CoNirroN, Lancashiie, 
Dty after Xmas^ i88o. 

Dear Miss Greenaway — I have not been able to write because I want 
to write so much-both of thanks and petition, since your last letter. 
Petition-not about the promised drawing : though it will be beyond 
telling precious to me ; I don't want you to work, even for a moment, 
for x9/-but I do want you never to work a moment but in permanent 
material and for-' all people, who on earth do dwell.' 

I have lying on the table as I write, your little Christmas card, 
* Luck go with you, pretty lass.' To my mind it is a greater thing 
than Raphael's St. Cecilia. 

But you must paint it-paint all things-well, and for ever. 

Holbein left his bitter legacy to the Eternities-The Dance of 

Leave you yours-The Dance of Life. — Ever your grateful and glad 

John Ruskin. 

Towards the end of this year Stacy Marks again wrote : 

... I will say no more now than to congratulate you on your 
success, in which I heartily rejoice — the more so as it does not destroy 


Austin Dobson 

the simplicity of your nature, or make you relax in your efforts after 

You have found a path for yourself, and though you kindly think 
I have helped to remove some of the obstacles that beset that path, 
I can claim no credit myself for having done so. 

The year 1880 found her still working on the Illustrated 
London News^ and exhibiting and selling her pictures at the 
Royal Academy (' Little Girl with Fan *) and the Dudley Gallery. 
She also made a drawing, beautifully cut by O. Lacour, for The 
Library (Macmillan), written by Mr. Andrew Lang and Mr. 
Austin Dobson, to be published in 1881. Concerning this 
Mr. Dobson wrote : 

How I envy you this captivating talent. And how lucky the 
little people are to get such pictures ! I can't help thinking that I 
should have been a better man if I had had such pleasant play-books 
in my inartistic childhood. You have a most definite and special 
walk, and I hope you won't let any one persuade you out of it. 1 
have seen some imitations of you lately which convince me — ^if indeed 
I needed conviction — that you have little to fear from rivalry. 

This year also was published a particularly charming frontis- 

Kiece to the annual volume of Little Wide-Awake^ issued by 
lessrs. Routledge. Other coloured frontispieces and title-pages 
well worthy of the collector's attention were done for several 
volumes of the same firm's Every GirFs Annual^ and The GirPs 
Own Paper, But Kate's output at this period was so great that 
it is impossible to do more than specify a few of her detached pro- 
ductions. Other events of this year were the translation of her 
verses in Under the Windcw into German by Frau KSlthe Freilig- 
rath-Kr6ker ; a request from John HuUah, whose acquaintance 
she had just made, to set some of her ^admirable' verses to music 
for a new edition of his book on ^ Time and Tune ' ; and an 
invitation to contribute to the Grosvenor Gallery Exhibition. 

The appearance of Under the Window {Am Fenster) in 
Germany was hailed with delight by the critics. Herr Trojan, 
writing in the National Zeitungy labelled it ^a small masterpiece 
of original stamp, out-and-out English, but acceptable to the 
inhabitants, great and small, of all other civilised nations.' The 
only objections to it in its new form were the rather too free 
treatment of the letterpress by the translator and the very 
unnecessary Germanicising of the children's names. 


Kate Greenaway 

In the same year Miss Greenaway began fully to realise 
the value of her drawings done for publication, and henceforward 
made it an inflexible rule to retain the drawings themselves and 
sell only the use of them. 

But by far the most important occurrence at this time was the 
beginning of her personal acquaintance with Mr. Frederick Locker, 
better known to-day as Frederick Locker-Lampson. He had, as 
we know, heard of her from Mr. Evans two years earlier, in con- 
nection with her verses for Under the fVindow. Now she was to 
become an intimate friend of the family and a constant visitor at 
Row&nt and Newhaven Court. Of one of these visits she 
writes : 

I've been living in very distinguished society. They have a lovely 
house at Cromer, and it is a beautiful place— -such a fine sea and such 
beautiful ponds and commons, also lots of beautiful houses to be seen 
about. I went to the most beautiful one I have ever seen — and such a 
garden, a perfect wonder — such flowers, it looked like June instead of 
September. There were many flowers I had never seen before ; it 
was a beautiful place. 

This year was also notable for what must have been a red- 
letter day in her life — tl red-letter day, it has often been said, in the 
public life of anybody. Most people like the attention of polite 
press-notices, but who is not a little bit the prouder when ^the 
little rascal of Fleet Street' first considers him worthy of his 
flattering notice ? Now for the first time Kate appeared in 
Punchy in an important drawing entitled ^ Christmas is Coming ! * 
(Dec. 4, vol. Ixxix. p. 254), made by the masterly pencil of Mr. 
Linley Sambourne. Miss Greenaway heralded the event, or at 
least the preparations for it, in a letter to Mr. Frederick Locker. 

Kate Greenaway to Frederick Locker 

27 Nw, 18S0. 

I heard again in a hurry from Linley Sambourne, and had to rush 
off yesterday in a great hurry and get a photo taken ; I had to send him 
simply a negative. So what I shall turn out like I dare not think, even 
if he could use it at all. I am curious to see what is going to be made 
of us all — if we are going to have large heads and little bodies, or how 
we are going to be made funny. . . . 


it fValP-CJta- Draviing by Kau Gtu 

■> of Mr,. Lt,iUr-L^mpit,<. 

Frederick Locker 

I really feel quite cross as I look at the shop windows and see the 
imitation books. It feels so queer, somehow, to see your ideas taken by 
some one else and put forth as theirs. I suppose next year they will 
be all little birthday books, in shape and sort. 

[It is clear that Mr. Austin Dobson's assurances had not soothed or 
convinced her.] 

Those little Bewick drawings haunt me — they are so wonderfully 
different to most that are done. It is a pity there is no way of repro- 
ducing such fine work. 

In Mr. Sambourne's drawing, Mr. Punch, ' at home,' is invaded 
by a flight and crowd of artists, writers, and publishers of children's 
books — by Kate Greenaway, Caldecott, Stacy Marks, Mr. Harrison 
Weir, Mr. Crane, and Mrs. Sale Barker, by Messrs. Macmillan, 
William Marcus Ward, Bradburv, Edmund Routledge, De la Ru^ 
Hildesheimer, Duflield, and Walker, all caterers for the little ones, 
* for all children,' says Punchy in the accompanying text, 'are Mr. 
Punch's pets. Let's see what you've got,' and forthwith he gives 
the place of honour to Miss Kate Greenaway, and warmly con- 
gratulates her on her Birthday Book for Children^ *a most 
dainty little work and a really happy thought for Christmas.' 
And a mother and her children are shown listening behind the 
door to Mr. Punch's declaration. 

This was in itself a gratifying evidence of Miss Green- 
away's popularity, but that it did not give much satisfaction to her 
friends is demonstrated by a letter from Miss Anderson, who wrote, 
'Thank you so much for sending me the Punch. I had the 
greatest difficulty in finding your portrait. What a horror ! It 
is actionable really ! ' • The feet is, the photograph from which 
the sketch was made was unflattering in the extreme. 

'K. G.' was destined several times to engage Punches 
attention, but it may safely be said that no press notice ever gave 
her greater pleasure than that which attended her first appearance 
in his pages. 

Many of Kate's happiest hours were spent in Frederick 
Locker's company. One day they would go to the National 
Gallery to gloat over some of their ' darling pictures,' another day 
to the British Museum, or Noseda's in the Strand to discuss prints, 
or to Harvey's, the printseller, in St. James's Street. Another 
day would find them at the Flaxman Gallery (' What a Flaxman 
gift you have,' he said one day), or at the ^ Arts and Crafts Exhibi- 
tion,' at a private view of the Grosvenor Gallery, or at Colnaghi's 


Kate Greenaway 

to discuss the purchase of a mezzotint. Through him she seems 
to have become acquainted with Browning and his sister in 1882, 
and with the Tennyson family, with whom she became on intimate 
terms. His letters to her, which run into hundreds, teem with 

advice, encouragement, and warning. In one of them (Nov. 28, 
1882) he says: 

It has occurred to me that you are about the only Engli*h artist 
who has ever been the fashion in Fiance. Bonington and Constable 
are appreciated, but not more than appreciated. 1 think anybody 
writing about you should notice this important fact. 

That same year she designed a book-plate for him. This was, 
it seems, with slight alterations reproduced as frontispiece to the 
edition of his London Lyrics published by Scribner in America. 

'.■ ~ J ■ 

• ^ 


*Girl with pink roses and pink ribbons.' 

From a roattr-coltur drmoing in the poiuwon of Stuart M. Samuiij Esq., M.P. 


Frederick Locker 

She also did book-plates for other members of the family. Dis- 
cussing them in 1892, he writes: 

There is a mystery about book-plates only known to certain 
initiated ones, like Lord de Tabley. They must not be pictorial and 
they must fulfil certain conditions. Now all that you have done for us, 
and they are many, fully satisfy my aspirations. 

She also did two coloured portraits of him, now in the possession 
of Mrs. Locker-Lampson. 

In 1883 she was amused to discover that her popularity was so 
great in Germany that she was claimed there as a German. Even 
the German poet who was her &ther was named, and — for 
Germans are nothing if not circumstantial — it was said that he 
was obliged to leave Germany in 1848 and went to live in England, 
where he was many years engaged in a house of business in the 
City, and that in later years he had returned to Germany. They 
gave the name of the street (GrUne Weg) in DUsseldorf where 
she lived, and stated that on publishing her first book Kate trans- 
lated the name of the street into English and took it as her mm- 
displume ! Thus is history sometimes made. 

Mr. Frederick Locker-Lampson was a great admirer of her art, 
and when he heard that Ruskin said in 1883 that she should aim 
at something higher, he laconically, and wisely, warned her to 
* Beware.* In the same strain he had written to her the year 
before : 

You must not be down-hearted about your art, or feel depressed 
when you gaze at Crane's productions. Each has his or her merit, and 
there is room for all. All I beg is, that you will not rashly change 
your style. Vary it, but do not change it. 

This advice was called forth by the following letter : — 

Kate Grbenaway to Frederick Locker 

24 May, 1882. 

I've been to call on the Caldecotts to-day with Mrs. Evans. My 
brother showed me some of his (Mr. Caldecott's) new drawings 
yesterday at Racquet Court. They are so uncommonly clever. The 
Dish running away with the Spoon — you can't think how much he has 
made of it. I wish I had such a mind. I'm feeling very low about 

89 12 

Kate Greenaway 

my own powers just now, for I have been looking at the originals for 
the new Crane book. Some of them are literally dreams of beauty. 
I do wish you could see them. There is one — a long low design of a 
Harvest Home. I shall try, I think, to get it, but so many are so lovely 
it is difficult to fix on the best. . 

I have just got a first proof of tny little Almanack (be sure you don't 
mention anything about it to any one except Mrs. Locker). Mr. Evans 
wants me to write a little verse to put on a blank page in it. I shall 
get you to look at it when I have done it. 

He inoculated her with his irrepressible love of collecting, and 
when she came to have a house of her own, acted as her adviser 
in beautifying it. For example, he wrote in 1882 : 

I saw a little Bow figure (china) to-day at the shop to which this 
card is the address (Fenton and Sons, Holywell Street), a figure as 
tall as your dancing lady that I gave you. She is in a green jacket. 
Look at it as you go to the National Gallery on Friday. He asks 
j^2 : IDS. for it and you might get it for £^z. It has been injured, 
but I rather like it, and I think it is genuine, and probably Bow or 
Chelsea. Now mind you go and see it or I shall be cross. It will 
only be ^\^ minutes out of your way. You will see it in the 

One day he would send her 'a little stool, not a stool of 
Repentance, either to sit on or on which to put the books or 
papers you are reading ' ; and another day, ^ a new edition of 
my Lyra Elegantiarum, It is a hideous book and costs is. 6d.' 
Another day there arrived a flower-stand, ^ which comes from 
Venice, and I hope is decorative ' ; on another the Athenaum 
(Dec. 1886), which is ^fiill of your praises' \ and on yet another 
day, a letter in which he says, ' I have told a man to send you 
two little Stothards which may or may not be pretty, but which 
are curious from their scarcity. One is called ^ Just Breeched " 
and the other "Giving a Bite." ' 

In return, she showered upon him and his fiimily drawings 
and copies of her books, in addition to the considerable number 
which he purchased. Indeed, so generous was she in this respect 
that in 1883 he wrote : 

I was shocked to receive [the drawing], coming as it did after 
the beautiful drawing you gave Mrs. Locker. Why should you waste 
your time on me ? It is heart-breaking to think of, when your spare 



3 1 




■ 1 i. 1 

U is. .tf li 1« Js 

Frederick Locker 

time is so valuable and you have so little of it. You must send me 
no more. I say it seriously. No more. I have plenty, plenty to 
remember you by, and when I am gone, enough to show my children 
the kind feeling you had for me. Work away, but for yourself — for 
your new house and for others more worthy. 

Her gratitude for attentions paid or eifts presented was 
always deeply felt, and prettily acknowledged and expressed. 
Thus : 

Kate Grbenaway to Frederick Locker 

27 At^: 1880. 

. . . The beautiful little red book ! I expect I was very horrid 
and did not thank you at all, and you thought * She is very ungrateful ; 
she might have been a little pleased, when I had taken that trouble to 
give her pleasure.' 

When people are very very kind — ^well — ^when they are very kind, 
I think I am so glad I can't say anything to tell them so. And so I 
send you now very many thanks for your kindness and the pleasure 
you gave me. 

I think you will be pleased to know that the Birthday Book seems 
to be going to turn out a selling success — 5,000 for America, 3,000 
for Germany, and the rest going off* so well that they are ordering 
paper for another edition. This first edition is 50,000 — so I am 
looking forward with rejoicing to future pounds and pennies, un- 
conunonly nice possessions. 

He was for ever begging her not to overwork herself, fearing 
that her health and bread -winning powers might fail. For 
example, he wrote in 1882 : 

I hope when you get home you will get to work, but take it 
quite easily (say two or three hours a day), and try to be beforehand 
with the publishers, etc., and not let anything interfere with or stop 
your daily moderate work. 

Sometimes he feigned jealousy of her devotion to Mr. Ruskin 
and others. In 1884: ^I daresay that Ruskin is sunning his 
unworthy self in your smiles. I hope he is impressed with his 
good fortune.' In 1885: *You must let me be one of your 
first visitors to the new house [at Hampstead]. What will you 
call it ? The Villa Ruskin or Dobson Lodge, or what ? ' 


Kate Greenaway 

He would get her to colour prints for him, and would watch 
for commissions for her. 

' I saw Pears of Pears' Soap this morning,' he wrote in i 88q ; 
* such a good fellow. Will you do something for him ? I am quite 
serious. I think you might do it without degrading your art.' 

They did not always agree in their opinions, but he could 
make a pretty amende. In 1 893 he wrote : 

I remember we disputed at Cromer. I was irritable and you were 
— irrational. That is not the right word — but you enunciated 
opinions that I thought were not sound, and I was stupid enough not 
to agree with you, for, as Prior says, you had the best of the argument, 
for *y9ur eyes were always in the right.' Time is too short for these 
arguments, at least so I think, so let us have no more. 

Occasionally they would discuss more serious topics, and a 
letter would be drawn from Kate with charming glimpses of 
self-revelation. For example : 

Kate Greenaway to Frederick Locker 

7 Ap: 1S81. 

No, I do not feel angry with the notice of Carlyle — that, I think, 
expresses very much what I feel — but I do feel angry with the letter, 
which seems to me commonplace in the extreme, by a man of an utterly 
different mind. I do like, and I most sincerely hope that whilst I 
possess life I may venerate and admire with unstinted admiration, this 
sort of noble and great men. They seem to me to be so far above 
and beyond ordinary people, so much worth trying to be a little like — 
and I feel they talk to such unhearing ears. The fact is, most people 
like to lead the lives that are enjoyment and pleasure to themselves ; 
and pleasing oneself does not make a noble life. But I must tell you 
what I mean, for I never can write well. . . . 

Also, when you come I want you to read a chapter in Sartor 
Resartus, It is called the Everlasting Tea. It is beautiful ; and it is 
when he has given up all selfish feeling for himself and feels in 
sympathy with the whole world. 

Frederick Locker would write special verses for her Christmas 
cards. He criticised her drawings, interjecting in his letters with 
curious abruptness and delightful irrelevancy, as though half afraid 


Frederick Locker 

of his temerity, such remarks as : ^Do you think the Bride sitting 
under the tree is so feeble that she could not stand up ? ' or ^ Are 
the young lady's arms (sitting under the tree) like cloth sausages ? ' 
and then promptly passing on to other subjects. 

At her request he also criticised her verse. Here is an 
example : — 

You ask me to do what Shelley would have had a difficulty in 
doing. Are you aware that your poem, as it stands, is only not 
prose because of the inversions ? and it has neither rhythm, metre, 
nor rh3rme, excepting * fun ' and ' done,' which is not a rhyme to the 

*Let me lie quietly in the Sunshine on God's green grass, for 
the laugh and fun is (? are) over and God's day is nearly done.' 

I defy Shelley, or any one, to rhyme those short lines — in the 
childish language you want. It is not possible. You must either 
lengthen the lines — or allow yourself a more free and complex 

Something like this : 

The sun is warm, so let me lie 

And sweedy rest. 
The grass is soft and that is why 

I like it best. 
The games are over that made us gay — 

And all the fun. 
The sun is dying, so God's ^r day 

Is nearly done. 

Then he would advise her how to take criticism : — 

You must be influenced by what the critics say up to a certain 
point — ^but not beyond. It is very annoying to be misunderstood and 
to see critics trying to show off* their own cleverness, but you are now 
paying the penalty of success^ and Tennyson sufiers from it, and your 
friend Ruskin and Carlyle and all who make their mark in works of 
imagination. I quite feel what you say about Ruskin. There does 
seem to be a ' holiness ' about his words and ideas. I am very glad he 
telegraphed to you, and wrote. His opinion is worth all the common- 
place critics put together, and worth more than the opinion of nineteen 
out of twenty Royal Academicians. 

Again, when one of the critics had complained of the lack of 
vitality and the woe-begone expression in her children's feces, he 
consoled her and criticised her together : — 


Kate Greenaway 

Sept, 1881. 

I have been thinking over what I said about expression in your 
faces. I do not think it would suit the style and spirit of your 
pictures if they were exactly gay children — but at present the same 
sort of complaint might be made about them that is made about 
Burne-Jones's, and with more reason, for nearly all the subjects you 
treat of are cheerful, and some playful, and none are classic or tragic. 
There is no doubt that B.-J. is wrong and the critics are right, but still 
I am grateful to B.-J. and take thankfully what he gives me, and think 
it very beautiful, but I cannot but feel its monotony of expression. 
Any mirth in your pictures should be quite of the subdued kind, such 
as you see in those delicious pictures of Stothard. Just get out the 
volume that you have and look at * Hunt the Slipper ' and many others, 
and you will see exactly what I want. You also see it in Reynolds, 
but often overdone, and more overdone in Romney and what I call 
the * roguish' school. Leech has often children that look very happy 
without an absolute smile. You must make your faces look happy. 

To this she replied in a letter from Pemberton Gardens : — 

Kate Grbenaway to Frederick Locker 

. . . You are quite right about the expressions. Of course, it is 
absurd for children to be having a game and for their faces to be 
plunged in the deepest despair and sadness. I shall bear it in mind, 
and I hope to do better in my next. 

The deep colour you complain of in some is due to hurry, I'm 
afraid. There was no time to prove this book, and I never had any 
proof for correction at all, for Mr. Evans said it was impossible, it 
must go ; and some of the darker ones suffer in consequence. I 
know you imagine I'm always having them for correction, and sending 
them back and back again ; but that is not so. . . . 

I've found a good subject for you to exercise your energy upon, 
namely, the Penny Postage stamp. Get the colour changed and you 
will confer a benefit on everybody. The old Penny Stamp was a 
good red. Then they changed to a worse ; and now to this detestable 
purple colour. I never put one on a letter without hating the sight 
of it. I can't tell you how bitter I feel. They ought to study colour 
in all things. 

I feel a competent judge to-day, because I flatter myself that this 
morning I have executed a drawing which for colour is — is — is — too 

— too — too as I look at it I feel happy. (Compare feeling for 

postage stamps.) 


'a calm in a tea-cup.' 

From a nvater -colour druiv'vig m the posveaion of M.ri. Arthur Stvcrn. 

Frederick Locker 

It is a girl walking a baby ; she has an orange spotted dress and a 
yellow hat with a green wreath round it, and the baby has a white 
frock with a blue sash and blue toes. Do you see the picture ? 

Your little baby girl seems to me as if she ought always to wear 
a coral necklace and have blue bows to tie up her shoes. 

To the same subject of solemn expression in her children Mr. 
Locker returns in 1 082 : 

I was looking at your sketch of the * little giddy laugh/ and I 
really think it is the only figure of yours I know that has a smile on 
its face. 

He kept a sharp eye on her employers, too, and helped her in 
business matters. In 1881 he wrote : 

told me you were engaged on two works for his house, in 

. one of which you were associated with Crane and Caldecott. Now 
remember you are to be treated on as handsome terms as those two 
gentlemen or I shall not be satisfied. We must find out what they 
are to receive. 

When his twins were born he called upon her to paint them, 
embodying his request in the following charming lines : — 

Yes, there they lie, so small, so quaint — 

Two mouths, two noses, ana two chins — 
What painter shall we get to paint 

And glorify the twins ? 
To give us all the charm that dwells 

In tiny cloaks and coral bells. 
And all those other pleasant spells 
Of babyhood ; — and don't forget 
The silver mug for either pet ; 

No babe should be without it : 
Come, fairy Limner, you can thrill. 
Our hearts with pink and daffodil 
And white rosette and dimpled frill ; 
Come paint our little Jack and Jill — 

And don't be long about it ! 

And sometimes Kate would take Locker in hand and talk 
about his work. 

*So it is a little French poem you have been translating,' she 
writes. * I wish you would do more of chat sort of thing — and some 
new originals too ; then I would do the illustrations to them.' 


Kate Greenaway 

The proposal was seriously considered for a time, but never 
was carried into execution — at least, for publication. What 
happened was this. Locker-Lam pson had written a number of 
poems on his children (published in 1881), and as a surprise 
present for his wife Kate Greenaway made a series of drawings 
in a tiny MS. volume, and the poet copied his verses on to the 
pages in his beautiful handwriting. This, he afterwards told 
Mrs. Locker-Lam pson, was the most anxious experience of his 
life ; for the drawings were done first, and he was in agony all 
the time lest he should make a mistake or a blot. The result 
of the collaboration is one of the most exquisite little bibelots it 
is possible to imagine, and the pretty title of it, ^Babies and 

Their delightful friendship lasted for fifteen years, and when 
he died in 1895 his son wrote to her: ^A son has lost the most 
dear fether a son ever had, and friends the truest friend a friend 
ever had.' 

An equal favourite, too, with Mrs. Locker-Lampson and with 
her children, to whom in 1883 she had dedicated Little Anriy 
embellishing the page with their four portraits. Miss Greenaway 
continued her visits after Mr. Locker- Lampson's death. She 
played hockey with them, and entered heartily into all their 
games. She * corrected ' Miss Dorothy Locker-Lampson's draw- 
ings, and she sent priceless little drawings of her own to Godfrey 
Locker-Lampson at Eton. Of the last of the visits one of them 
wrote : ' It was such tremendous fun having you here, and you 
so enter into our roysiering spirits.' And again : * I wish you 
were here to join in with your rippling laughter.' 

Her attachment for her hostess was very strong, and she 
would write to * My dear dear Mrs. Locker ' letters full of affection 
and gratitude and of love for the children. At the same time she 
was not to be lured from her work, and in thanking Mrs. Locker 
for her repeated invitations and kindness — ^ it makes the world so 
much more beautiful,' she said — she firmly declined to budge \ 
but finding it hard to refuse, she would write to Mr. Locker 
(April 8, 1882): 

Don't let Mrs. Locker ask me to come. Do explain to her ; tell 
her Mrs. Jeune asked roe to go to see her and I was obliged to say No. 
And it all looks so delicious ; even about here the trees are so tendrilly 
and pretty, and it is so sunny and holiday feeling — I long to be out 


Frederick Locker 

in it all. It ig quite an effort to sit at the table bending over my 
paper. All the little children are out in the gardena and I hear their 
voices. I even envy the cats as they run along the wall. 

She would not only illustrate her letters to Mr. and Mrs. 
Loclcer-Lampson with the little pen sketches she bestowed on 
her other favoured friends, she would now and again embeUish 
them with finished water-colour drawings exquisite in quality. 
Of these one or two arc here reproduced, but they necessarily lose 
most of their charm in surrendering their beauty of colour. 

The last of the letters runs as follows -. — 

On ■ Letter la Mn. Frederick Locker-La mptOD. 

Dear Mrs. Locker — You see me at the top doing penance in my 
own particular style, being, according to Mr. Locker's advice — unin- 
fluenced by the woika of others. I do not know which bear (black, 
white, or brown) behaves in the most bearish manner, but I feel I 
am of that colour j but please forgive me and let me lay thank you 
very much for your beautiful gift. 

You must not think so much of any little sketches I do for you ; 
it is only my voice saying thank you for all your kindness always. 
The half of the candle belongs to Mr. Locker for his dear little boi. 

97 '3 




As has already been said, to drive to a palace in a royal carriage to 
see a princess had been a dream of Kate's childhood ; and in the 
year 1881 her baby wish saw its almost complete fulfilment. 
K.O}^lties with a small ' r ' were now, she said^ a matter of course 
to her, but of Royalties with a big 'R' she had as yet no 

In her diary of engagements, the entry 'Sunday, July 17, 
Crown Princess of Germany,' foretells her first visit to Bucking- 
ham Palace. Her own account is not forthcoming, but we have 
hint of it in the following quotation from a letter written to her 
by Mrs. Richmond Ritchie. 

It was just like a fairy tale to hear of you at court with all the 
nice little princes and princesses hopping about and asking you to make 
enchanting things for them. Mrs. Stanley ^ says they one and all lost 
their hearts to you, and to me for bringing you to their threshold. 

To this Mrs. Ritchie adds : 

I remember Miss Greenaway telling me of her visit to the Crown 
Prince and Princess at Buckingham Palace, and how cordial they were, 
and how the Crown Prince came in and put his hand on his wife's 
shoulder and said laughing, ' I am the husband,' as he stood up like a 
column by the Princess, who was a little woman. 

^ Now Lady St Helier. 


The Empress Frederick 

This was the beginning of a friendship which did as much 
honour to the Imperial lady as to the artist whose worth she was 
so ready to recognise. Until the Empress's death Kate Green- 
away's books, as often as not extra-embellished with original draw- 
ingS) and her autographed Christmas cards, were always received 
with appreciative acknowledgments, generally accompanied by 
some little souvenir in return. T'hey would be accompanied 
by letters from the Count SeckendorfF such as these sent by the 
Empress's command : i— 

Count Seckkndorpf to Kate Grbenaway 

OsBOKNi, Dee, 2$th^ 1888. 

Dear Miss Kate Greenaway — Her Majesty the Empress Frederick 
desires me to acknowledge the receipt of your charming new little 
book, and to say how very kind it was of you to think of her just now 
at Christmas time. Her Majesty is most grateful to you for your 
artistic little present. — Believe me, dear Miss Kate Greenaway, very 
sincerely yours, G. Sbcicendorff. 

Count Seckendorff to Kate Greenaway 


Berun, Jan. zStkj 1895. 

Dear Miss Greenaway — You have had the kindness to send Her 
Majesty the Empress Frederick such a charming little drawing for 
Christmas. Her Majesty was delighted with it. The little Almanack 
is giving her so much pleasure. Will you kindly accept in return a 
new photo of Her Majesty which I am sending by Royal Messenger 
to-day ? — Believe me, dear Miss Greenaway, very sincerely yours, 

G. Seckendorff. 

Of one of these presents Ruskin wrote on December 30^ 

I liked hearing about the present from [the] Princess. I wonder 
what it can be. I wish I was a Prince and could send you pearls and 

At one time the Empress Frederick showed a personal 
sympathy not indicated by these formal letters, and during the 

^ For authorisation to reproduce these letters we are indebted to the German 


Kate Greenaway 

period of her great sorrow wrote to Miss Grecnaway touchingly 
and at length ; but that correspondence no longer exists. 

About this time Miss Greenaway was introduced at the house 
of the Hon. Mrs. Stanley to the Princess Christian, whose apprecia- 
tion of her both personally and as an artist is shown in several 
letters from this year onwards, preserved by her with affectionate 

As Mrs. Richmond Ritchie's name has been mentioned, it should 
be said that for years she and Kate Greenaway were on terms 
of close intimacy, and although they were not able so frequently 
to meet in later years, there was always the most cordial regard 
and love between them. In 1885 there was talk of their ^ doing a 
story together,' but it never came to anything ; yet the idea had 
evidently been long in their heads, for in 1881 Mrs. Ritchie had 
written : ' When we write our book it shall be called " Treats," I 
think, and be all about nice things that happen to little girls — 
don't you think so ? ' It is matter for regret that a proposal so 
full of charming possibilities was never carried into execution. 

In the same year Routledge & Sons published Mother Goose, 
or The Old Nursery Rhymes, Illustrated by Kate Greenaway — one 
of her daintiest productions, although marred in several instances 
by crude printer's ink and careless register. Its success, though 
not equalling that of the Birthday Book, was yet very great, 
66,000 copies being printed in English, German, and French. 
The sum of ^^252 was paid to her for the use of the drawings, 
and in royalties she received over /6so. The book bears on the 
title-page the baby thrown into a oasket of roses which so took 
Ruskin's fancy. As Mrs. AUingham has said, ^No one could 
draw roses like Kate Greenaway,' and other critics have compared 
her drawing of flowers with the work now of Van Huysum and now 
of Botticelli. Some papers complained that some of the nursery 
rhymes had been unduly tampered with ; but the illustrations met 
everywhere "with the most cordial praise. An enthusiastic critic 
exclaimed, ^ Should the children of the present generation happen 
to take into their little curly heads to call together a "monster" 
meeting — say in the Lowther Arcade — and propose, second, and 
resolve to erect a great public monument to some favourite goddess, 
we have a strong conviction that, on a show of tiny hands being 
taken, the chairman would declare that Miss Kate Greenaway 
had been unanimously elected for the honour.' It should be re- 
membered that ^correct versions' of nursery rhymes and tales 


From a ivater-colour drawing executed in the aihum of Ernest G. Broton, Etq. 

00 = 

* A Day in a Child's Life ' 

vary in jdifFerent parts of the country, and that every one considers 
the version of his childhood the true one. Kate Greenaway 
naturally adopted those she had learnt in London or in Nottingham- 
shire, and the charge of ' tampering ' fells to the ground. 

This year she also contributed a charming frontispiece entitled 
^ Little Fanny * to Routledge^s Christmas Number^ which should not 
be forgotten by the collector. It was a wonderful shilling's 
worth for those days, and including as it does contributions by 
Caldecott, Gustave Dor6 (then at the zenith of his somewhat 
evanescent fame), Griset, and Mr. Walter Crane, it is now some- 
thing of a trouvaille. 

Another trifle of this year which should not be overlooked is 
a tail-piece, ^ Little Dinky,' done for Locker-Lampson's privately 
produced selection of his London Lyrics. 

Kate was now hard at work on the illustrations for A Day in 
a Child's Life^ Illustrated by Kate Greenaway^ Music by Myles B. 
Foster^ to be published by Messrs. Routledge in 1882. 

Concerning its origin Mr. Foster — ^son of the eminent water- 
colour painter, Birket Foster — writes : 

If I remember rightly, I had already put the whole thing together, 
and, in fact, I had suggested this as a happy 'follow' to 7^ Cldldren's 
Christmas^ by Bob and myself. It seemed such a nice subject for 
children's music. I culled from books Nos. i, 3, 4, 5, and 8, asked 
my friend M. Gibney to write * Tired,* compounded the rhymes of 
'The Lesson' and * Sleeping' myself, and then showed the whole 
thing, already set to music, to Mr. Evans, and he suggested sending 
it to K. G., saying that if she liked the idea, she would illustrate 
it. That I believe to be the commencement. At this time some 
hundreds of mill-hands at Keighley in Yorkshire and at Holt in 
Wiltshire were finding pleasure in The Children's Christmas^ and 
the thought of their wishes and little needs largely led me on to 
the work in question, and they performed the Day in a Child's Life 
very prettily in tableaux. It was followed each year by a new 
work (with my own words) — Cinderella^ Beauty and the Beast ^ 
Lampblack^ etc. — but, alas, all these lacked the charm of Kate 
Greenaway's exquisite art. 

Commercially considered, this extremely pretty book was a 
success, 25,000 copies being issued to the English-speaking 
world alone, yet the press was not unanimous in its approval. 
The Times especially complained that ^ Miss Greenaway seems to 
be lapsing into rather a lackadaisical prettiness of style. Her 


Kate Greenaway 

little people are somewhat deficient in vitality. On the whole^ 
we fear we can hardly, for all its prettiness of binding and colour* 
ing, recommend her Day in a ChikPs Life as a very cheerful 
present, nor is the selection of songs which she has illustrated 
of a much more stimulating order.' 

This year on no fewer than three separate occasions Punch 
again turned his attention to Miss Greenaway, all within the space 
of one month. On December lo, under the heading * Punch's 
"Mother Hubbard "Grinaway Christmas Cards,' Mr. Harry Furniss 
gave a full-page drawing of fourteen grouped cards, the first of 
which represented Mr. Punch presenting a Christmas card to the 
~>ueen and Royal Family, all, saving Her Majesty, being dressed in 
rreenaway costumes. John Bright appears as Little Jack Horner, 
picking a 70th plum out of his birthday pie ; the Duke of 
Cambridge in petticoats is riding a cock-horse ; Mr. (Lord) Cross 
as Jack — Jill is in the background — has tumbled down with a pail 
of * Thames Water Bill ' ; Lord Randolph Churchill, as Little 
Tommy Tattlemouse, is haranguing * a little house ' from the box 
of the Fourth Party ; Sir John MiUais is trying a glass slipper 
on the foot of his own ' Cinderella ' ; the Duke of Bedford, as 
'Mary Mudford quite contrary,' is appreciatively contemplating 
the ' untidiness and inhahng the perfume of Covent Garden 
market; Mr. Fawcett, postmaster -general, as * Spring- heeled 
Jack,' is taking a flying leap over the telegraph wires ; Mr. 
Parnell, as the wolf in bed, casts his ogreish eyes on the little 
figure of Ireland and her basket of neglected Irish Industry \ Mr. 
Gladstone, as the 'Jack,' is chopping down the beanstalk of the 
Land League ; Sir Whittaker Ellis, the new Lord Mayor of 
London, as Dick Whittington, is issuing invitations from the 
Mansion House ; and other topics of the day are introduced with 
similar ingenuity. 

On December 17, Mr. Linley Sambourne contributed one of 
his most highly finished drawings, entitled ' The Royal Birthday 
Book.' Mr. Punch, kneeling in court- dress, receives Princess 
Beatrice^ Birthday Book from the Princess herself, an ideally 
and delightfully draped figure wearing coronet and sandals, the 
central figure of the composition. Toby stands on guard, 
crayon-holder in hand, while on the clouds, prominent among 
other floating figures, like sympathetic ^miliars, are Kate 
Greenaway (in iCate Greenaway costume), Caldecott, and Mr, 
Walter Crane. 


* Punch ' 

The accompanying legend runs : 

The Christinas volumes well deserve their gains 
Of Caldecott'Sy Kate Greenaway's, and Crane's. 
Fair Beatrice, we thank you for your pains. 

Much Ado About Something, Act ii. Sc. 3 
(Mr. Punches Version). 

And finally, on December 24, Mr. Furniss gave a second 
series of four ^ Grinaway Christmas Cards,' in which Mr. Edison 
figures as Aladdin, Britannia as Old Mother Hubbard, Mrs. 
Langtry as the Sleeping Beauty, and Irving, Ellen Terry, Mrs. 
Kendal, Charles Warner, Nellie Farren, Bancroft, Toole, Brough, 
and others as the Girls and Boys coming out to Play. It was all 
excellent fooling — another indication, if one were needed, that 
Kate Greenaway's name and method were name and method to 
conjure with. 

The following letter of this year from a highly distinguished 
authoress who wishes to preserve her anonymity gives a vivid 
idea of the pleasure which her books brought into innumerable 
homes : — 

Octebtr 10, 188 1. 

Dear Miss Grcenaway — Your sweet little white sibylline volumes 
have again come to delight us all — thank you so very much. H. 
(aged 3 years) came bundling down, panting, with her book in 
her pinafore and wildly excited. (I think on the whole she likes 
* Jumping Joan' best — but she likes each best.) B. (aged i^) came 
in also breathless to look at H.'s book. H. firmly said, *• No, B., you 
may just look, you mustn't touch ic' Then B. was held down by force 
and we lit the candles, and H. looked at her prize while I looked at 
mine with B. (only B. and H. couMt understand how the two books 
could be so exactly alike). Then R. came home and we all exclaimed 
together, and now we all send you our love and our thanks, dear, again 
for your beautiful gift. 

Are you rested and stronger ? Did you have a pleasant summer ? 
We are only just home from a great many clouds and fields and 
children and dandelions, to find them all again in your sweet incanta- 

L. T. told us about your Princesses' visits, which was most thrilling 
and interesting. Good-night, and thank you again for all of us. 

At this time Kate was sending copies of her Mother Goose 
to a few chosen friends, among them to her kind mentor and 


Kate Greenaway 

chief adviser H. Stacy Marks ; and the presentation brought her 
the following critical letter of acknowledgment : — 

Stacy Marks to Kate Greenaway 

Oct, iitAy 1881. 

Dear Kate Greenaway — Many thanks for your last book. You 
will get * tired ' of sending me your works sooner than I of receiving 
them. I have not acknowledged the receipt of this before because I 
knew you would prefer a letter telling you what I think of your work 
(even if somewhat critical) to a mere formal one of thanks. I thank 
you all the same very much, for your work always gives me pleasure — 
it seems so happy and so fearless of all the conventional rules and ideas 
that obtain generally about the art. 

In many respects you have improved, and the drawing is firmer and 
better. But let me have my fault-finding first, for *• I am nothing if not 
critical.' You have got rid of the spur-like shadows, but where, even 
in England, do you see such cabbagy trees as on pages 5, 7, 29 ? You 
might find a better pattern even in the elm, which // cabbagy. 

The action of the figure on page 40 is impossible coming down- 
hill — how about the centre of gravity, madam ? You know I am not 
conventional, but I am troubled to know why you don't make the hero 
of your story more conspicuous. Thus on page 47 Tom the Piper's 
son is the least prominent figure in the composition, and where are the 
boys ? 

Again — the Beggars coming to town are in the far distance, and 
there's only one dog ! What I mean is, that these two don't tell 
their story, but I suppose you have some good reason for your treatment. 

As instances of fearlessness, I admire the pluck which can place a 
face directly against a window with each pane made out as on page 12, 
and the arrangement of the stick in Jack Horner which coincides with 
his ^ad and ^otA hands^ and as it (the stick) is not continued to the 
ground we can only suppose it to be resting on the boy's knees. 

And now I have done being disagreeable. Despite its little faults, 
it is a charming book. Your backgrounds of old houses are delightfuL 
The two most pictorial drawings are * Polly, put the kettle on ' and 
' Cross-patch.' The latter is especially good and might be painted — 
the right fore-arm only should be a bit more foreshortened. 

A last look gives me a last fault to find — the chins, especially in 
some of the boys, are still very pointed. 

There ! now I have finished, but I don't apologise for telling you 
the truth from my point of view, because I know you are strong enough 
to bear it and amiable enough to like it. It will always be a source of 


From a zvater-colcw drmving in the possession of JV. Finch^ Esq. 

* Little Ann * 

pride to me to remember (as you told me) that I was, though in the 
humblest way, partly instrumental in finding you the way your strength 

Riiskin received his copy in a less critical spirit i and a few 
weeks later he wrote : 

John Ruskin to Kate Grbbnawat 

Brantwood, Coniston, 
Christmas D^y 1 88 1. 

My dear Miss Greenaway — You are the first friend to whom I 
write this morning ; and among the few to whom I look for real sym- 
pathy and help. You are fast becoming-I believe you are already, 
except only Edward B. Jones-the helpfullest in showing me that there 
are yet living souls on earth who can see beauty and peace and Good- 
will among men-and rejoice in them. 

You have sent me a little choir of such angels as are ready to sing, 
if we will listen, for Christ's being born— every day. 

I trust you may long be spared to do such lovely things, and be an 
element of the best happiness in every English household that still has 
an English heart, as you are already in the simpler homes of Germany. 

To my mind Ludwig Richter and you are the only real philosophers 
and ^ of the Nineteenth Century. 

I'll write more in a day or two about many things that I want to 
say respecting the possible range of your subjects. I was made so 
specially happy yesterday by finding Herrick's Grace among the little 
poems-but they are all delightful. — Ever gratefully and affectionately 
yourSi J. RusKiN. 

The year 1882 was chiefly occupied with the illustrations for 
a new edition of that eajdlv love of hers, LittU Ann and other 
Poems^ by Jane and Ann Taylor, a charming production, though 
slightly marred by certain little faults of drawing which, with all 
her strict self-training. Miss Greenaway strangely enough never 
quite overcame. The ^ stilt -like' shadows had certainly dis- 
appeared, but the feet still sometimes went a little astray, and 
signs were not wanting here and there that seem to herald the 
advent of mannerism. But it was a passing phase. 

She was now suffering more than ever from imitators, to the 
vast indignation of her friends and admirers. For example, 

^ Thii word is illegible. 

loS 14 

Kate Greenaway 

Mr. Locker designates a book entitled Afternoon Tea ^ a shameful 
imitation of your manner, [which] if it goes on will tend to 
disgust the brutal British public and therefore injure you.' 

In Belgium especially, where she had a great vogue, not only 
were her books themselves being imitated, but the illustrations 
were copied without acknowledgment on to handkerchief, plates, 
vases, caskets, and other objects of commerce, and the copying 
was so vilely done that they were caricatures rather than repro- 
ductions of her work. All this tended, as Mr. Locker truly 
predicted, to vulgarise the Fairyland which she was creating. 

As far as she could Kate combated the evil by refusing to 
part with the copyright of her works. In 1898 she wrote to 
Mr. Stuart M. Samuel, M.P., a generous patron for whom she 
would certainly have strained a point if she could : 

Thank you so very much for the cheque, but I'm- so sorry I 
cannot give you the copyright. I have made it a rule for a long time 
not to part with the copyright of my drawings, for I have been so 
copied, my drawings reproduced and sold for advertisements and done 
in ways I hate. 

Nor was Belgium the only offending land. In France and 
England there were also many manufacturers who recognised the 
adaptability of her designs for printed fabrics and did not hesitate 
to ' lift ' them for their own purposes. Still, there were honour- 
able exceptions among those who were not prepared to copy 
or adapt her productions without receiving due permission and 
offering pecuniary acknowledgment. The offers of most of these, 
however, she did not care to accept, from a feeling that the ' pot- 
boiling ' character of the work would be derogatory to her art. 
But apropos of an application by Mr. Powell, of the Whitefriars 
glassworks, it may be mentioned that the very next year Ruskin 
himself carried out his expressed intention, and had a drawing ot 
hers of a little girl with a doll ' put on glass,' and wrote of it from 
Brantwood : 

It will be a nursery window when you are next here, but it 
might be, as rightly, part of a cathedral window. 

A gratifying episode of 1882 was the appearance in the great 
French art magazine, the Gaxette des Beaux^-Arts (vol. ii pp. 74 
€t seq.) of an article by Monsieur Alfred de Lostalot, in which, 
whilst recognising particulars in which her work fell short of 


Miss Lily Evans 

that of Caldccott and Mr Walter Crane, he yet gave her the 
first place for the special qualities of charm and sentiment. And, 
after a eulogy too long to quote here, he ends up qiiaintly — 
* Meanwhile I shall loclc up the works of W. C., of C., and of 
Kate Greenaway in my bookcase with precious care ; unexpected 
conclusion works so precious cannot be left in the hands of 
children ! ' 

Kate Greenaway knew exactly what kind of letters children like 

Lily Evini. 

to receive, and she loved to send them playfiil missives, instinct with 
her love of flowers and animals. An example of such letters, 
addressed to the little friend for whom she had so tender an 
aficction, may be given in illustration. 

Kate Greenaway to Miss Lily Evans 

My dear Lily — I have not written to fix a day because I felt I 
ought not to spare one just now — or indeed for a little time longer. 

Now will you mind waiting a little longer, then my mind will be 
more at rest, and we will have a real beautiful day. I'm very sorry 


Kate Greenaway 

to ask you to wait, but I know you won't mind really. AUo more 
things will be up in the garden and in my boxes of din. [Window- 
boxes for plants, which Miss Evans, as a country child, had never seen 
before.] I am just going to get pansiea in them. 

I've a real hope ihat I do see golden rod coming up at last — or 
does a witch live in our garden, and is it phlox after all ? 

Some time after Easter, when you have time to spare, you will get 
me some more primroses. Those last were real beauties, and lived 
like anjrthing. In the excitement of coming away I quite forgot to 

thank Misa for all the trouble she took helping to get them for 

me, so you thank her now. 

The kitten has hurt its foot a little. The spring gets into its 
head and I'm afraid causes it to run on walls with broken glass on the 
top, or perhaps it attends a dancing class on the quiet and practises 
too much. Anyhow it is constantly. making itself lame, and when it 
loses the use of a sponge and towel at one go, you can guess how !t 
looks — a little rim of white round its mouth and the rest nicely 
toned. Good-bye, Love to E. and all, and we will go as soon at 
ever I can. K. G. 

a Pencil Sketch in the poweuion of Lady PoDlifei. 

1882 (continued) and 1883 

AWAY's first almanack — A GREENAWAY *BOOM* — MR. 

RusKiN, as has been seen, took the art of Kate Greenaway very 
seriously long before she became personally known to him, and it 
is evident, from the portion of a letter found amongst her papers, 
probably forwarded to her by the recipient, that he had some 
hesitation in opening the correspondence which began after the 
dinner with Stacy Marks. The fragment, which runs as follows, 
bears no indication either of the recipient's name or of the occasion 
of the writing ; but in all probability it was addressed to Mr. Stacy 
Marks himself, their common friend. 

It is a feeling of the same kind which keeps me from writing to 
Miss Greenaway-the often er I look at her designs, the more I want 
a true and deep tone of colour,~and a harmony which should distinctly 
represent either sunshine, or shade, or true local colour. — I do not 
know how far with black outline this can be done but I would fain 
see it attempted. And also I want her to make more serious use of 
her talent-and show the lovely things that are^ and the terrible which 
ought to be known instead of mere ugly nonsense, like that brown witch.^ 
— If she would only do what she naturally feels, and would wish to 
teach others to feel without any reference to saleableness-she probably 
would do lovelier things than any one could tell her-and I could not 

^ The lurid and dramatic witch in Under the fVindcw, 


Kate Greenaway 

tell her rightly unless I knew something of her own mind, even what 
might be immediately suggestive to her, unless perhaps harmfully. 
Please tell me your own feeling about her things. J. R. 

A correspondence, however, ensued, which led up, on 
December 29, 1882, to this laconic but all-important entry in 
her diary : * Mr. Ruskin came. First time I ever saw him.* 
His advent had been heralded by the following letter : — 

John Ruskin to Kate Greenaway 

27rA, Dec, 82. 

Dear Miss Greenaway — Friday will do delightfully for me,-even 
better than to-day-having been tired with Xmas letters and work. 

This is a lovely little book -all through -the New and Old 
Years are chiefly delightful to me. But I wish some of the children 
had bare feet-and that the shoes of the others weren't quite so like 

The drawing on my letter however is perfect ! shoes and all-eyes 
and lips-unspeakable. — Ever your grateful and devoted 

J. RusiciN. 

From the first moment of their meeting a friendship sprang 
up which grew in strength and mutual appreciation until his 
death in 1900. 

Concerning this interesting first meeting Mrs. Arthur Severn 
writes : — 

I shall never forget his rapturous delight at first making her 
acquaintance ! — and she was indeed one of the sweetest, kindest, and 
most gifted of women. Lily [Miss Severn] was devoted to her, and 
we often talk of her and deeply lament her loss. She loved nothing 
more here [at Coniston] than driving, and was almost childish in the 
delight it gave her, and with no fear of the horses — and yet she was 
so timid in other ways. 

Henceforth not only did Ruskin and Kate Greenaway con- 
stantly meet either at Hampstead or at Brantwood, where she 
paid him several delightful visits, but they carried on a spirited 
correspondence, which on his side certainly ran to five hundred 
letters, and on hers to probably double that number. For when, 
in 1888, illness compelled him to cease writing, Kate made it her 
kindly business to continue her frequent missives in order to add 


Z^'''^.d^. S^ 


^ J- 


4^ (\.Q/\'^^£^^ -J ZLp-^^ ^.^..^sJL tcU^ ^ ^tJ^^ Ot» i >A 

Kate Greenaway 

to the pleasures and relieve the monotony of a comparatively 
inactive old age. And in order to amuse and delight him, she 
illustrated nearly every letter with one sketch at least. A number 
of these little fancies of her pen have here been reproduced. 

Ruskin's letters are fiill of allusions to his overworked condi- 
tion, but while fully alive to the golden rule, * When you have too 
much to do, don't do it,' he never applied it to himself, and in the 
end he had to pay the penalty which Nature exacts. 

By the kindness of Mr. Ruskin's executors and literary 
executors — Mrs. Arthur Severn, Mr. George Allen, and Mr. 
A. Wedderburn, K.C. — ^we are enabled to take a specified tithe 
of his side of the correspondence. In the main, his letters will 
be left to speak for themselves, for the discussion of the side-lights 
which they throw upon Praterita and other of his writings, 
interesting though it would be, would lead us too far astray. 

Miss Greenaway appears to have kept every scrap of Ruskin's 
writing, and even treasured the numerous telegrams which he 
sent her on special occasions ; for Ruskin loved the telegraph. He, 
on the other hand, observant of his own dictum in Sesame and 
Lilies — * Our friends' letters may be delightful or necessary to-day : 
whether worth keeping or not is to be considered ' — seems to have 
destroyed all of hers save one, which were received prior to 1887. 
A large proportion of her letters, as has been said, are embellished 
with charming head- and tail-pieces, to which he makes constant 
allusion. In her diary for February 8, 1883, appears for the first 
time the entry ^ Birthday J. R.' Henceforward the day is always 
so marked, and — a sacred memory to her — is so continued even 
after his death. 

In March she received an invitation to Coniston, and she 
wrote to Mrs. Severn, Ruskin's cousin and adopted daughter, to 


8 March 1883. 

Dear Mrs. Severn — You are very very kind, and Mr. Ruskin is 
very very kind, and I look forward with very great pleasure to the 
time I shall pass with you. . . . And, please, you are not to make so 
much of me, for I am not in the least a frog Princess. Wouldn't it 
be nice if I were, to emerge suddenly, brilliant and splendid ? 

In May she paid her first visit to Brant wood, and found her- 
self all at once plunged into an atmosphere of thought and art 


The Ruskin Friendship 

and literature which was to her alike new and exhilarating. That 
she was somewhat bewildered by her new experiences is shown 
by the following quotations from letters to Mrs. Evans and her 
daughter : — 

Kate Green aw ay to Mrs. Evans 

It was all altered (my coming here) in such a hurry, and since I 
have been here I have had so little time, or I should have written 
sooner, but the days do go. After breakfast I am allowed (which is a 
great favour) to go into the study and see all sorts of beautiful things, 
with little talks and remarks from Mr. Ruskin as he writes ; then we 
go drives, walks, or on the lake till tea-time. Then it is dinner-time ; 
then he reads us something nice or talks in the most beautiful 
manner. Words can hardly say the sort of man he is — perfect — simply. 
... I do not know yet when I shall come home — they want me to 
stay a month, but I shall not stay nearly so long as that. 

And again : 

Everything is confused, I never know day or date. Fm always 
looking at books or pictures. I am absorbed into a new world altogether. 
I'm sorry to say it has turned so wet ; we have to stay in and there 
are no more hills or lake or streams. I shall be up next week. I'm 
feeling very bad that I am not up now, but Mr. Ruskin wants me to 
stay, wants me to tell him things about colour, and puts it in such a 
way I can't well leave, and the few days won't make much difference. 

On her return home she writes to Miss Lily Evans : — 

My dear Lily — Enjoyments seem pouring in upon you — mine are 
over for a time — for you see I am home again, and it was so lovely up 
there, you can't think. You know how I admire things — well I did 
such a lot. There was such lots to admire — such wild wide stretches 
of country and then such mountains — such mossy trees and stones — 
such a lake — such a shore — such pictures — such books — my mind was 
entirely content and satisfied, and I miss it all so much, and grumble 
and grumble like you did when you came home from Scarborough. 

Johnny was the worm that bore it for a while, then he turned, and 
said I just wanted taken to a road in the East End of London for a 
while — then I should have all the ridiculous nonsense knocked out of 
my head and look upon Hampstead ^ with gratitude. — / daresay. It's 
all very fine, isn't it ? when you just come home. 

^ The Greenawaya were contemplating moving from Holloway to Hampstead. 

113 '5 

Kate Greenaway 

And really you are coming out, dining out at the B. F.'s ^ really ! I've 
just got a little note with 

To meet the Prince and Princess Christian. 

Mrs. Jeune. 
At Home. Early. 

Quite fashionable ! I think Til pass it on to you. You shall be 
K. G. for once, for you are coming out and growing up quite dread- 
fully. Where is Caroline now ? [Miss Lily Evans' favourite doll]. But 
it don't matter, for you're very like the old Lily after all. 

So good-bye, dear, with my dearest love. K. G. 

This year (1883) Ruslcin accepted his second call to the 
Oxford Professorship, which had been interrupted in 1879 by 
ill-health, and forthwith he gave his first series of lectures on 
*The Art of England,' already quoted from. The following 
extracts from letters to Kate dated * Oxford, nth May '83* and 
'Heme Hill, 17th May '83,* hint at his forthcoming lecture on 
' Mrs. Allingham and ICate Greenaway.' 

I only got here this afternoon out of Derbyshire, and found your 
lovely little note waiting and it made me partly happy-«nd partly 
sorry-but chiefly the flrst-for indeed I look forward to your working 
at Coniston without any acute sense of being tortured next time- 
when you really can get settled on those stones — (which are much 
better drawn than any you ever did before) — and I can stay to keep 
the cows in order ! My old Chamouni guide told me once I was fit 
for nothing else. 

I can't write a word but this to-night. — I'll think over the drawing- 
cleaning ; perhaps it will be safest to trust it only to you-there's 
plenty of time, for your lecture isn't till the 23rd, — we shall have had 
our tea long before that. 

r can't part with the drawings to be india Rd [india-rubbered] 
— having them by me helps me so, and I'm going to put those which 
I show — (I'm only going to show what I speak of, to prevent careless- 
ness in looking) under raised mounts which will quite hide soiled 

I am very anxious to know what you have been thinking about- 
colour, and skies, since you got over the first indignation at my 
tyrannies ! — and I've ever so much to say about the daughter of Heth "^ 

1 Birkct Fosters. '' William Black's novel, published in 1871. 


From a ivater-colovr drawing in the pouesaon ofyohn RiUy^ Esq. 

The Ruskin Friendship 

— this chiefly, that you never need think I can like a tragic novel — 
and this is either teazing or tragedy all through. 

The Scotch too, is ezecrable-and all the younger brothers are 
merely like bolsters in a pantomime-put there to be kicked or tumbled 
over. Black has some quiet sense of humour in more refined elements 
-but is merely clumsy in pantomime. 

So many thanks for the large print-but the next you choose must 
be cheerful. 

On June 7thj he writes from Hcrne Hill : — 

You are not to put any more sugar-plums of sketches in your 
letters-as if they weren't sweet enough without. Besides, I can't 
have you wasting your time and wits in that scattered dew. of fancy. — 
You must really gather yourself into a real rivulet between banks in 
perspective-and reflect everything truly that you see. 

You absurd Kate to think I was tired of the drawings. I was only 
tired of seeing the corners unfinished-you're nearly as bad as me, that 
way. Now be a good girl and draw some flowers that won't look as if 
their leaves had been in curlpapers all night-and some more chairs than 
that one chair-with the shade all right and the legs all square-and 
then I'll tell you what you must do next. 

Again on the 15th, from Oxford : — ' 

I'm thinking of you every day and a great part of the day long, 
whenever I get out into the fields, more and more anxious every day 
that you should resolve on a summer's work of utter veracity-drawing 
-no matter what,-^i^/ as it /'/. 

I am certain all your imagination would expand afterwards, like — 
a rosebud. But especially I do want some children as they are, 
— ^and that you should be able to draw a pretty one without mittens, 
and that you should be more interested in phases of character. I want 
your exquisite feeling given to teach-not merely to amuse. 

Miss Alexander's book ^ will delight you-but it is all chiaroscuro- 
or rather ckiar with no oscuro-while you will always think and see 
in colour. 

I'm going to do a bit of ' Kate ' glass-directly, for some English 
hall in fairyland. 

You'll soon have proof of the lecture on you ! 

^ By his American friend, Miss Francesca Alexander, the exquisite artist of The 
Roadside Songs of Tuscaty and the charming writer and poet who to this day with her 
mother are residents of Florence, famous for their chanty, kindliness, and hospitality. 


Kate Greenaway 

On June I7tb, he writes from Oxford : — 

What a. lovely little bit of dark grounded grace ! and the two 
pencils are delicious-but the feet are getting ten small. 

It's delightful to me beyond telling that you do yourself feel the 

need of a time of obedience to the ' everlasting Yea ' of Things. — What 

I meant by phases of character was — in painting, what Scott or 

Shakespeare give in words, — the differences in love- 

which arc endless in humanity. Those little 

rho were playing at being in church must 

been so different from little girls who were 

tormented by being at church. 

Yes, it is very sad that I can't get done 
here, — but there are three years of absence 
to redeem, and being allowed in my own 
ment to have my own way entirely, it is a 
[ringent duty to do the best I can. And just 
what the arrangements of a system of leaching 
inectton with a great University means, or 

have mounted, for the present, 15 of the 

:r Goose drawings beside the plates, and put 

in a cabinet by themselves, among our loan 

People are immensely interested in them, 

_.,u ..:el the difference between drawing and plate 

On » '^f*' '<■ quite as you would like them to. Every dravring 

has its own sliding frame and glass so that they 

are aisalutiiy safe, as far as handling is concerned. 

You must hear a little more about Miss A.'s before you see them ; 
I shall very soon have a proof of lecture for you. 

And from Brantwood on the 22nd : — 

What lovely, lovely things these are, that have come to-day— the 
tambourine and the looking out to sea. — But your own eyes ought to 
have been three times as big-on your eyes be it-and I don't under- 
stand the doggie carrying the maulstick-becausc I've never seen you 
with a pet in a blue riband-and the first thing I should have done 
would have been to order the feathers out of your hat ! . . . 

It was nice, that, of the gentleman and friendship-and yet it 
wasn't. How dogged the English are in thinking that you can't 
praise anybody honestly. 

I got tired at Oxford and had to run down here for some rest- 
but shall be up again in a week or two and I hope in the mean time 
to get some things organised for engraving some of the line sketches 

The Ruskin Friendship 

in line, and the moment this bad weather is past, I shall expect to 
hear of the progress of the River. I saw a boy in a brown jacket 
with a yellow basket in his hand-looking up wistfully at the sky-in 
the main street of Worcester-he wanted only a Kate to draw him 
and would have been immortal. 

At the end of June Monsieur Ernest Chesneau had written 
to Ruskin asking him for K. G.'s portrait and particulars of her 
life for an article in a French publication. Alluding to this he 
writes from Brantwood on July 4th, 

I kept the portrait till I could scarcely bear to part with it. But 
it's gone to-day, — and Pve wreaked my jealousy on M. Chesneau by 
three pages of abuse of the whole French nation and Academy. 

By this time enthusiastic admirers among foreign critics were 
many. There were M. Arsine Alexandre and M. Jules Girardin 
of Paris, Dr. Muther of Breslau, M. A. C. LofFelt, art-critic of 
the Dutch Journal, The Fatherland^ and Dr. J. Zurcher of 
Amsterdam. And Karl Emich, Count of Leiningen-Westerburg, 
was among the keenest of them all. Even so Parisian a person- 
age as Alexandre Dumas yf/f, who in 1881 had acquired one 
of her pictures, was sensitively responsive to her essentially English 
art. The agent through whom he purchased the drawing wrote 
to her : — * Your talent is still more appreciated in Paris than in 
London. A proof of it is that all the imitations made of your 
works, which are sold here, have not any success in Paris at all, 
where something else but nice book-binding is required' — the 
suggestion being that, unlike the thick-headed Saxon, the artistic 
Gaul could discriminate unfailingly between the original and imi- 
tations — a two-edged compliment which Kate might appreciate 
as best she could. 

Ruskin was much concerned at Kate Greenaway's occasional 
lack of the sense of form. He did not want her to study 
anatomy, but was for ever begging her in his letters to make 
studies from the nude figure as the only way. But on this matter 
she was stubborn : she had had enough of nude studies at her 
own studio and at Heatherley's. Here are two of his numerous 
letters on the subject : — 

Brantwood [1883]. 

I'm beginning real/y to have hopes of you. This terrific sunset 
shows what a burden those red and yellow wafers have been on your 


Kate Greenaway 

conscience. Now, do be a good girl for once, and send mc a little 
sunset as you know now how to do it-reversing everything you used 
to do. 

— Then secondly, — I'm in great happiness to-day thinking that M. 
Chesneau must have got that lovely Kate this morning, and be in a 
state words won't express the ecstasy of. Then thirdly — As we've got 
so far as taking ofF hats, I trust we may in time get to taking off just a 
little more-say, mittens-and then -perhaps -even- shoes !- and (for 
fairies) even — stockings — And-then — 

My dear Kate, — (see my third lecture sent you to-day) — it // 
absolutely necessary for you to be- now -sometimes. Classical. — I 
return you-though heartbrokenly (for the day)-one of those three 
sylphs, come this morning. 

Will you — (it's all for your own good !) make her stand up, and 
then draw her for me without her hat-and, without her shoes,- 
because of the heels) and without her mittens, and without her-frock 
and its frill ? And let me see exactly how tall she is-and how- 
round. [Note written in pencil : • Do nothing of the kind. J. R. S.*] 

It will be so good of-and for-you — And to, and for-me. 

After finishing thi^ letter, he has turned it over and written : — 

Finished right side yesterday. Posted 6th. That naughty Joan 
got hold of it-never mind her-you see, she doesn't like the word 
' round '-that's all. 

Who, conversant with Miss Greenaway's work, can doubt 
that Ruskin's advice was entirely right and sound ? 

RusKiN TO Kate Greenaway 

Brantwood, lor^ July /Z^. 

You really are as good as gold-heavenly gold of the clouds, to be 
so patient-and to send me such lovely things-but I'll try to make 
them of real use to you with the public. — The cloud fairies are 
LOVELY and I'll have them put in a glass window the moment I'm 
sure of my workman. — (I'm waiting in great anxiety for the result 
of the first trial-I am not anxious about the colour-but about the 
drawing of the features and hair exactly right on the larger scale.) 
And so also the milkgirl, tidied the least bit about the feet, shall be 
glassed-in better than mirror. 

The sunset is a delight to me and all that you say of what you 


The Ruskin Friendship 

used to feel, and will again. All that is necessary is some consistent 
attention to the facts of colour and cloud form. — Make slight pencil 
memoranda of these, the next pretty one you see. Have you a small 
sketch-book always in your pocket ? 

You ought to make notes of groups of children, and of more full 
faces than you-face-usually. The profile is becoming conventional. 

I have never told you about Villette etc, — They are full of clever- 
ness but are extremely harmful to you in their morbid excitement ; 
and they arc entirely third-rate as literature. — You should read 
nothing but Shakespeare, at present. 

— And-you should go to some watering place in August with fine 
sands, and draw no end of bare feet, — and — what else the Graces 
unveil in the train of the Sea Goddess. 

Again on the same subject he writes on the 26th, 

I want you to go to Boulogne and take a course of fishwives and 
wading children. 

And once more : — 

The dancing girls are delightful but you are getting a little 
mannered and I shall press you hard for sea study. No winter work 
will take its place. I want the blue of the sea for you and the running 
action of the bare feet. 

RusKiN TO Kate Green a way 

Beantwood, [&/»/.] dtk^ [1883]. 

What a lovely letter I've got this morning ! I can't but think that 
lake-pond must be a divine one I know between Dorking and St. 
Catherine's, Guildford — the springs of it, and indeed any chalk springs 
at their rising, beat our rainfall streams all to mud, they are so 
celestially purified by their purgatory under the chalk. Also thej are 
oi green water ! while ours are — purple \ ! ! 

If only, some day, next year you could come fresh to them with a 
sketch-book ! 

But all you have been seeing is boundlessly helpful and good for 
you, and the motives of the sketches you send to-day are unsurpassable 
and I must have you carry them out when you get to work again. 

The news of Scarborough fills me with delight also. I shall prob- 
ably then be at Abbotsford-and to get a little sketch from you at the 
breakfast table there ! fancy ! 

I hope my letter about the engraving will show you how I felt 


Kate Greenaway 

what you did ! — But you Vc no notion what can be done yet, when IVc 
got the man into harness. His dotting tint is execrable, but we must 
have clear line tints often. 

And in the same strain — 

it^tk Sept, [1883]. 

Yes, I know well how tired you are, and I do hope you'll play on 
the sands and do nothing but what the children do — all day long. 
As soon as you are yourself again I'll tell you exactly what I want 
about the drawings. There was work enough for a week in that one of 
the girl with brown background, alone. — ^And you ought to do nothing 
but patches of colour with a brush big enough to tar a boat with for 
months to come. 

Then Fors Clavigera appeared embellished for the first time 
with a headpiece from Kate Greenaway's pencil — a charming little 
girl watching the sun set across the sea. This was followed by a 
sweet and dainty little dancing maiden as headpiece to Letter 93, 
headpiece and tailpiece to Letter 94, headpiece to Letter 95, and 
full-page frontispiece to Letter 96. In the last-named a dancing 
babe of fortune leads by the hand a still more fascinating babe in 
rags — the rags and babe as clean and sweet as are all the rags and 
babes in K. G.'s child-Utopia — whilst a dainty lady tripping in 
the rear impartially scatters roses over them from a basket under 
her arm. The drawings in no way illustrated the text \ they 
were wholly adventitious decorations. 

These are the only K. G. drawings published by Ruskin, 
saving those to Dame fVtggins^ of which some account 
appears in the next chapter, although others were engraved. 
These last, or some of them, are included in the later volumes of 
the noble Library Edition of Ruskin's works. The engravings in 
Fors were executed by Roffe. Their appearance on the printed 
page without any sign of a plate-mark is at first sight very 
puzzling, but this is accounted for by the extravagant size of the 
plates, which were, by Ruskin's special orders, made larger than the 
page upon which they were destined to be printed. 

The only one of the 'Letters' in which Kate Greenaway is 
referred to by name is No. 94, ' Retrospect.' Ruskin is insisting 
upon the proper work for women, 'scrubbing furniture, dusting 
walls, sweeping floors, making the beds, washing up the crockery, 
ditto the children, and whipping them when they want it, etc. 
etc' Then he goes on with advice as to plain work : 


The Ruskin Friendship 

Get Miss Stanley's book, which gives you the elementsof this work 
at Whitelands, — (I hope, however, to get Miss Greenaway to sketch us 
a pattern frock or two, instead of the trimmed water-butts of Miss 
Stanley's present diagrams). 

In the following extract from a letter of November 12, he 
refers to the scheme which he had in his mind for reproducing her 
coloured work in a more satisfactory way than could be done by 
the printing press. K. G. was to make coloured drawings 
which were to be printed in outline and then coloured by 
hand in facsimile — a method frequently used, but nowhere so 
successfully on a large scale as in France. Ruskin himself had 
her engravings in some copies of Fors coloured by hand in this 

On November 12th, he writes: — 

This maid of the muffin is beyond, beyond ! I must engrave her 
for a lovely Fors on toasting forks. 

The colouring of Miss Primrose and all others must be done for a 
quite full and frank payment, enabling the colourist to count her day's 
work as a comfortable and profitable one. Each must be done as 
attentively and perfectly-while as simply-as possible. 

It ought only to be part of the colourist's day's work-else it would 
be sickeningly monotonous-there will never be any pressure or hurry 
of her-the price being simply so much per score or hundred as she 
can deliver them. 

The next letter refers to Little Ann. 

Stacy Marks to Kate Greenaway 

Dcr. 31, 1883. 

I won't allow the year to pass away without thanking you for what 
is, I think, on the whole, I might say entirely, your best booh The 
drawing is better and I think there is more feeling for grace in the 
figures than in the earlier works. 

I have put it away carefully in my * Greenaway Collection ' where 
it will always be a valued item. 

Your work should be all the more popular after all Ruskin has said 
of it. He has dined with us once or twice before he left for Coniston 
and we have more than once talked of you. 

He is a singular and wayward genius. I tried to get him to admire 
Caldecott but it was no use — and he had not a word to say for Keene 
or Sambourne. 

121 16 

Kate Greenaway 

The following extract from a letter of Rus kin's dated ' Brant- 
wood, 26th December '83 ' refers to the headpiece of Letter 93 
of Fors : — 

I shan't go to sleep over your note to-day. 

But I have no words any more than if I was asleep, to tell you 
how marvellous I think these drawings. No one has ever done any- 
thing equal to them in pure grace of movement-no one in ezquisiteness 
of dainty design~I tremble now to ask you to draw in any other way. 

As for the gift of them, I had never such a treasure given me, in 
my life-but it is not for me only. I am sure that these drawings will 
be [valued] endlessly and everywhere if I can get them engraved the 
least rightly, — the sight of them alters one's thoughts of all the world. 

The little beauty with the note, alone, would have made a 
Christmas for me. 

I hope you will like the use I've made of one of your little dancc- 
maidens-I think her glory of simplicity comes well alone. 

The beginning of 1883 had seen the publication of Kate 
Greenaway's first Almanack. Published at one shilling by 
George Routledge & Sons, and of course engraved and printed in 
colours by Mr. Edmund Evans, it achieved an enormous success, 
some 90,000 copies being sold in England, America, France, and 
Germany. It was succeeded by an almanack every year (witli 
but one exception, 1896) until 1897, the last being published by 
Mr. Dent. The illustrations were printed on sheets with blank 
spaces for the letterpress, in which English, French, or German 
was inserted as the market demanded. There are various little 
conceits about these charming productions which are calculated to 
appeal to the ^ licquorish chapman of such wares ' ; so that complete 
sets of them already fetch respectable sums from the collectors of 
beautiful books, especially when they have not been divested of 
the paper envelopes or wrappers in which they were originally 

A Manchester bookseller who invested in three hundred copies 
had a startling experience. Almost within the week he was 
gratified to find that his stock was exhausted. Subsequently he 
was visited by a would-be purchaser who tendered three pence for 
as many copies. In response he protested that the selling price 
was one shilling apiece, when his customer informed him that 
the book was selling at that moment in Piccadilly — Piccadilly, 
Manchester — at the price of one penny. And enquiry not only 


From a large tvater -colour drawing in the possession of Campbell S. Holbrrton^ Esq. 

The Kate Greenaway * Boom ' 

proved the statement to be correct but also elicited the &ct that 
the books in question were the property of this very bookseller, the 
rapid disappearajice of whose stock had 
been primarily due not to sales but to theft. 

It has been said — let us admit, with 
a little exaggeration — that Kate Green- 
away dressed the children of two con- 
tinents. In such measure as it is true, 
this was mainly due to the fact that her 
almanacks found a regular sale in France, 
from which America and Europe so 
largely take their cue in feminine matters 

There was now a Greenaway boom, 
just as we have since seen a Trilby boom, 
and amongst other amusing compliments 
this year a firm of shoemakers approached 
the artist with a request to allow them 
to christen a special boot for children 
which they were putting on the market 
' The Kate Greenaway Shoe.' Inasmuch 

as feet were rather a weak point with her, the application may 
well have proved a little disconcerting. 

Towards the end of the year a proposal was afoot that Miss 
Greenaway should issue a volume of selected poems, with illustra- 
tions from her pencil, and Mrs. Severn proffered her aid, if it were 
desired, in making the choice. To this amiable offer her friend 
replied ;— 

Kate Greenaway to Mrs. Arthur Severn 

My dear Mrs. Severn — . . . And now about the book au^estion. 
Such a book is thought of, even planned out; and it rested between 
the choice of that and one other to be the next year's book. The 
other one was decided, as we thought the poetry book would be the 
best last. But I'll talk to you about it, and please don't say anything 
about it tilt I've seen you. I don't want it known that I'm going to 
do a poetry book. It is an understood thing that I do NOT mention 
the names of any book going to be done till it is brought out — and 
this book is to be poems of my own selection. I can only do those 

Kate Greenaway 

that get into my mind of themselves — my own pets and favourites. 
But so many thanks all the same for writing that long letter about it. 
. . . With love, — Yours affectionately, K. G. 

This was followed, a little more than a month later, by a 
further note on the subject : — 

Katb Greenaway to Mrs. Arthur Severn 

1 1 Pembirton Gardens, Holloway, N., 
xnd Feb. 1884. 

Dearest Mrs. Severn — The verses have come in safety — one or 
two are quite new to me, and would be exactly what I'd like to put 
in. They are all nice, but I doubt if in some cases the copyrights 
could be obtained, and some of them are a little too much about 
children. Children, I find, like to know about other things — or what 
other children did — but not about children in an abstract sort of way. 
That belongs to older people. 

I wonder if you remember what poem you liked best when you 
were a child ? I can remember, well, some I liked, — * How Horatius 
kept the Bridge ' — I used to love that. Then * The Wreck of 
the Hesperus,' * The Pied Piper,' ' The Rope Walk,' ' The Thoughts 
of Youth.' But I'm afraid I had a great many loves — indeed, and so 
I do now. I find something to like in most things. With love, and 
hoping soon to see you, — Yours sincerely, K. G. 

In the summer of 1883 a charming collaboration took place in 
the pages of the Magazine of Art (which was then under the editor- 
ship of W. E. Henley) between Kate Greenaway and a poet in 
whose tender, exquisite, and dainty art she took infinite delight — 
Mr. Austin Dobson. Earlier in the year an article in that magazine 
on ' Art in the Nursery * had paid homage to the work of Miss 
Greenaway, along with that of Walter Crane, Randolph Caldecott, 
Miss Lizzie Lawson, and M. Ernest Griset. But Kate is the 
heroine of the band, and the * peculiar quality of cherubic dowdi- 
ness ' of her youngsters, the winsomeness of the babies' solemn 
flirtation unaer an immense umbrella, and similar fascinating 
scenes, received the appreciation that was their due. Then in a 
number of the magazine that contained contributions by Robert 
Louis Stevenson, Cosmo Monkhouse, Leader Scott, Mr. W. C. 
Brownell, and others, Kate Greenaway contributed her charming 
page-drawing in which Mr. Austin Dobson's equally delicious 



Po«m by Anitia DobuD. Dnwiag by Kali Greeniwiy. 

Kate Greenaway 

verses were set. The drawing, here reproduced, naturally suffers 
greatly from the necessary reduction in size : lines are thickened, 
the exquisite drawing of faces, of eyes and mouths and dimpled 
chins, and the dainty gradations of the pencil strokes, are inevit- 
ably impaired if not lost. But the grace of the composition, the 
pretty grouping, the sweet childish attitudes, remain intact ; and 
the verses, written in in our reproduction by Mr. Dobson's own 
hand, though here too small in scale to be easily read, match the 
design in playful elegance. They run as follows : — 


' Mine be a cot,' for the hours of play. 
Of the kind that is built by Miss Greenaway, 
Where the walls are low, and the roofs are red. 
And the birds are gay in the blue o^rhead z 
And the dear little figures, in frocks and frills, 
Go roaming about at their own sweet wills, 
And play with the pups, and reprove the calves, 
And do nought in the world (but Work) by halves. 
From ' Hunt the Slipper ' and ' Riddle-me-ree ' 
To watching the cat in the apple-tree. 

O Art of the Household ! Men may prate 

Of their ways ' intense ' and Italianate, — 

They may soar on their wings of sense, and float 

To the au^deUi and dim remote, — 

Till the last sun sink in the last-lit West, 

^is the Art at the Door that will please the best ; 

To the end of Time 'twill be still ttie same, 

For the Earth first laughed when the children came ! 







The industry of Kate Greenaway during the years 1884 and 1885 
added considerably to the growing list of her works. First there 
were the two Almanacks^ which, save for the enlarged format of 
that of 1884 — ^an experiment not repeated — showed a distinct 
advance on the first. 

That for 1884 certainly did not please Ruskin, for he wrote : — 

I find Baxter ^ thinks the almanack beautiful ! if that's any consola- 
tion to you-but / divide the figures of it simply into the Hobblers 
and the Kickers, see August, March, June, and November for the 
hobblers (or shamblers) and the rest for kickers with the one variety 
of Straddler in October. 

But the public was otherwise-minded and bought over 90,000 
of the combined issues ! Then a new experiment was tried in the 
shape of four calendars, all for 1884 ; but these proved a financial 
failure and had no successors, and the designs were afterwards 
for the most part adapted to Christmas cards and issued by 
Goodall & Sons. They are only mentioned here for the sake of 
completeness, and although they contain some of Miss Green- 
away's most charming work, they are but trifles by the side of 
the more ambitious publications of these two prolific years. 

Of these the Language of Flowers first claims attention with 

' Ru8kin*8 body-servant. 

Kate Greenaway 

an edition of 19,500 copies. Half of these went to America, 
which country henceforth was to prove to K. G. a client even 
better than England. This, like the Almanack, failed to please 
Ruskin, who wrote on Oct. 8th with his usual directness : — 

You are working at present wholly in vain. There is no joy and 
very, very little interest in any of these Flower book subjects, and 
they look as if you had nothing to paint them with but starch and 
camomile tea. 

The fact is that the book was printed on unsuitable paper and 
much effect was thereby lost ; still the illustrations, although not 
always very apposite, include some of the daintiest and most ex- 
quisitely drawn figures and flowers she ever produced. 

Undeterred by Ruskin's denunciation Miss Greenaway sent 
a copy of it to Mrs. Severn with the following pathetic little 
note : — 

Kate Greenaway to Mrs. Arthur Severn 

II PfMBERTON Gardens, Holloway, N., 
9M Nov. 1884. 

I've been thinking of you so often for days past. I send you my 
little book. Mr. Ruskin thinks it very bad. He says he's ashamed 
to show it to any one — I hope it won't affect you so fearfully. I am 
very disgusted myself — on/y I Jon^t feel / am so much to blame as the 
printers, who have literally blotted every picture out. 

But, anyhow, you'll think I mean well in sending it you, don't 
you ? And you — do you feel quite strong and well again now ? . . . 
Remember, when there is a chance I might see you, I'd be very very 
very glad and delighted. — Yours affectionately, K. G. 

Then came Kate Greenaway s Painting-Book which, although 
it consisted of blocks brought together from Under the Window^ 
Kate Greenaway* s Birthday Book^ A Day in a Chil£s Life^ Mari^ 
gold Garden^ and Mother Goose, had nevertheless a great and 
deserved success, and set at least forty thousand children painting 
away at her delightful designs. 

This was followed by Mavor*s Spelling- Book j surely, as now 
illustrated by K. G., one of the most inspiring school-books ever 
published for children, with the beautifully engraved cuts printed 
in brown in the text. Ruskin wrote of it : * Spelling Book ever 
so nice — But do children really learn to spell like that ? I never 


^ Mayor's Spelling- Book ' 

did/ To which it may be added that his own experience is given 
in Praterita^ vol. viii. p. 20(1900 ed.). 

Oddly enough the success of the venture was comparatively 
small, only 5,000 copies being called for. But when, seeing that 
there was no great demand, the publishers issued the capital letters 
alone in a tiny square 48 mo volume entitled Kate Greenaway^s 
Alphabet^ the vagaries of book-buying were curiously exemplified by 
the fact that the circulation reached the more than respectable total 
of 24,500 copies.^ Mr. Evans, with whom the idea of illustrating 
Mavor originated, proposed that Caldecott should be associated 
with Kate Greenaway in the work, but to this, in spite of her 
great admiration for her friend, she would on no account consent. 

Half the number of the illustrations were engraved on wood 
as usual by Mr. Evans. The rest were reproduced by process 
and, says Mr. Evans, with characteristic fair-mindedness, neither 
K. G. nor Caldecott could at the time say which they considered 
the more satisfactory. Kate was much amused and gratified by 
the notice in the Athenaum^ which waxed eloquent, and even 
facetious, over the book. After comparing the little designs 
to those of Stothard, and declaring that under Miss Greenaway's 
guidance three-syllable words become quite easy, it proceeds : 

It is quite evident that the artist is not yet equal to four syllables 
— at least she has left the section which is devoted to those monsters 
without an illustration of any kind. Perhaps she, like ourselves, believes 
no boy ever gets to four syllables in Mavor ^ and thinks it useless to 
illustrate that stage of learning. 

The drawings to Mavor had a further destiny ; for several of 
them were used, with the addition of colour and in reduced size, 
to provide illustrations to the Almanack of 1889, while the Almanack 
of 1895 (much against Miss Greenaway's desire) was entirely 
made up of them. Very beautiful they looked ; but it is more 
than probable that the public detected the employment of ^ old 
matter' and that the commercial failure which attended the 
publication that year was at least the partial cause for the annual 
issue of the little work being suspended. 

But the most important addition to the output of these years, 
that which added largely to the artist's reputation, was Marigold 
Garden^ in which she was once more author and illustrator in one. 

^ This includes an edition of 2,000, published by Hachette tc Cie., of Paris. 

129 17 

Kate Greenaway 

For an expensive book the sales were very large, England taking 
6,500, America 7,500, and France 3,500 copies. The charm of 
the book lies in itself, in spite of halting verse or summary 
perspective. Any description of it here would be inadequate : 
it must be seen to be fully appreciated. 

The year 1885 also saw the publication of Dame Wiggins of 
Lee and her Seven IVonderful Cats. A Humorous Tale. Written 
principally by a Lady of Ninety^ edited with additional verses by 
Ruskin, and with some new illustrations by Kate Greenaway. 
These nursery rhymes had first seen the lignt in 1823 with the 
woodcuts coloured by hand. In the present edition these were 
facsimiled in outline and left, as Ruskin says in the preface, for 
* clever children ... to colour in their own way.* Of his and 
K. G.'s part in the republication he says : 

I have added the rhymes on the third, fourth, eighth and ninth 
pages-the kindness of Miss Greenaway supplying the needful illustra- 
tions. But my rhymes do not ring like the real ones ; and I would not 
allow Miss Greenaway to subdue the grace of her first sketches to the 
formality of the earlier work. 

A further edition of the little book was published* in 1897 ^7 
Mr. George Allen. 

In the letters preceding the publication of Dame Wiggins^ 
which by the way in Prateriia Ruskin designates his ^calf-milk 
of books on the lighter side,' we find several references to K. G.'s 

In May he writes : * Don't bother yourself with Dame Wiggins 
-it's the cats you'll break down in.* But his prophecy proved 
wrong, for on July 5 he confesses 'you never shewed such sense 
in anything as in doing those cats * ; and again on the i ith, ' The 
cats are gone to be wood-cutted just as they are-they can't be 
better ' ; and again on the 29th, alluding to a further proposed 
collaboration : ' We'll do that book together of course-I'U write 
a story about perpetual spring-but-however are you to learn what 
a lamb's like? However after those D. W. cats I feel that 
nothing's impossible.* 

About this time Miss Greenaway for the first and we believe 
the only time listened to the voice of the journalist for the 
purposes of an article on her art in an American magazine entitled 
The Continent. Her hatred of publicity was not in any way over- 
come, but she felt that as the article was inevitable ' facts were 


From a wateT'Colmr drawing in tie fossessm o/CAarles P, yohnson^ Esq. 

^ Kate Greenaway's Birthday Book ' 

preferable to fiction.' Moreover, by reason of her consent, she 
was in a position to impose restrictions, and she made it a cardinal 
condition that such particulars as ^ what she takes to eat before 
sitting down to her work,' and personalities of every sort, should 
be rigorously excluded. She may have been influenced to give 
certain authoritative information in consequence of a former 
experience, when a ' ladv interviewer ' of an American journal — 
a lady whom she had declined to receive — published an * inter- 
view * that was an invention from beginning to end. Later on 
Miss Greenaway met the Editor of the publication and seized 
the opportunity to state the facts, when he professed, and doubtless 
felt, much indignation at the imposition which had been practised 
upon him and the public. 

Then also occurred the fishing episode to which allusion has 
been made in an early chapter. It is a curious commentary 
on the fable of the man and his ass that even Kate Greenaway s 
tender and humane designs could not escape fault-finding on 
ethical grounds from a hypercritical admirer of her art. 

* How is it/ he wrote, ' that there are several lovely publications 

of yours that I am prevented from treating 
my little friends to on account of the fascina- 
tion of the angling scenes which so often occur 
in them ? . • . Do you not think there is no 
necessity for encouraging children to take pleasure 
in killing animals ? ' 

He had been foolish enough to object to 
some such innocent illustration as that of 
the little boy fishing, on October 14 of 
the Birthday Booty whereto is appended a 
verse for which, by the way, Kate was not 
responsible : 

What is this boy fishing for ? 

What does he hope to get ? 
He hopes to get a veiy fine fish, 

But I think he will get wet. 

To this remonstrance she replied to the 
effect that Providence had ordained a state 
of war between man and the lower animals 
and that we must take a good many things as we find them. 

Kate Greenaway 

The Ruskin letters o' 1884 are full of interest. Criticism, 
appreciation, good-humoured chaf^ and sadness, jostle one another 
at every turn. A standing joke is K. G.'s supposed jealousy of 
Miss Alexander and her exquisite work. In April she had asked 
for her autograph, and he writes in fun, for he could not have 
been serious in his criticism : — 

Much you'd care for one of Miss Alexander's letters-on * principles 
of chiaroscuro' and the like. She's drawing very badly just now- 
there's a little bonne-bouche for you. 

In several letters he returns to the old charge and rallies 
her : — 

Thanks-more than usual-and much more, for the little drawing- 
an effort in the right direction ! But quite seriously, and all my wishes 
out of the court, you MUST learn to draw something more of girls 
than their necks and arms ! ! You must go to the sea-side, and be resolved 
that-if nothing else be pretty-at least the ankles shall be. 

Anon he mixes judicious praise and blame, rarely giving her 
jam without a pinch of medicine in it. 

RusKiN TO Kate Greenaway 

Brantwood \Jan, yek, 1884]. 

It's not * horrid bad ' but it is not at all good. 

When ARE YOU going to be GOOD and send me a study of any- 
thing from nature-the coalscuttle or the dustpan-or a towel on a 
clothes screen-or the hearthrug on the back of a chair. 

I'm very cruel, but here's half a year I've been waiting for a bit 
of Common sense — ! 

And I've nothing but rain and storm all day-I never saw the 
place so dreadful,-but if you'll only paint me the coalscuttle or the 
towel it will be a solace. — Don't you think you ought to know when 
you do well or ill without asking me ?-I am very glad to hear of that 
instinct for greater things, though. 

Ruskin to Kate Greenaway 

Brantwood [April 20M, 1884]. 

Yes, I am really very sorry about the sore throat. You had better 
take it fairly in hand at once, lie by, and foment and otherwise get 


Ruskin Correspondence 

yourself to rights at once. You can't work while you are ill like 
this. But this cloud lady is very lovely, and you really MUST draw 
her again for me without any clothes, because you've suggested a perfect 
coalheaver's leg, which I can't think you meant ! and you must draw 
your figures now undraped for a while — Nobody wants anatomy,-but you 
can't get on without Form. 

I'll send her back to have her gown taken off as soon as you're 
able to work again, meantime I've sent you two photographs from 
Francesca ^-only don't show them about, because I want them not to 
be seen till my text is ready. 

Again on May ist, he writes : — 

Indeed the drawing is lovely, beyond all thanks or believableness 
or conceivableness and gives me boundless pleasure, and all sorts of 
hope of a wonderful future for you. But it is of no use to ask me how 
things are to stand out. You never had any trouble in making them 
do so when you had power of colour enough-but you can't make these 
tender lines stand out, unless you finished the whole in that key, and 
that ought only to be done of the real size. What you ABSOLUTELY 
need is a quantity of practice from things as they are-zxA hitherto you 
have ABSOLUTELY refused ever to draw any of them so. 

On Julv 6th, referring to an illustration she is engaged on for 
Marigold Garden^ he adds instruction to praise : 

You're a good girl to draw that leaf. The four princesses in green 
tower * will be delightful but the first thing you have to do in this leafy 
world is to learn to paint a leaf green, of its full size, at one blow, as a 
fresco painter does it on a background, with the loaded brush opening 
by pressure to the leafs full breadth and closing to its point. 

Again on the 9th : — 

I knew you could do it, if you only would. That's been what's 
making me so what you call angry lately. This is as good as well 
can be. Only, remember brown is only to be used for actual earth, 
and where plants grow close to it or for brown dark leaves etc., not as 
shadow. And there's already more delineation than I at present want 
you to spend time in. 

And on the 25th he continues his instruction : — 

The ivy is very beautiful and you have taken no end of useful 
trouble with it, but the colour is vapid and the leaves too shiny. 

^ Mis8 Francesca Alexander. ' Page 22 of Marigold Garden* 


Kate Greenaway 

Shine is always vulgar except on hair and water-it spoils leaves as 
much as it does flesh-and even jewels are better without it. I shall 
return you this study which you will find very useful and I've sent you 
two more sods to-day, more to be enjoyed than painted-if you like to 
do a bit of one, well and good. 

I am glad to hear of the oil work-but it is winter work not 
summer. I can't think how you can bear to spoil summer air with it. 

On October i8, he says : — 

You must like Turner as soon as you see landscape completely. 
His affectations^-or prejudices, I do not wish or expect you to like — 
any more than I should have expected him to like roses drawn like 

Then he finds that he has been expecting too much, counting 
on physical powers with which Kate has not been endowed. 

I have not enough allowed for your being nearsighted but shall like 
to see what you do see. At any rate near or far off, study of the 
relation of moss ^ is indispensable. 

Those hot colours of flowers are very lovely-you can do as many 
as you like-only not dull things mixed with Naples yellow. 

Look well at the foot of Correggio's Venus, and at the weeds in 
Mantegna's foreground. 

For the same reason Ruskin has more ^ sods ' cut and packed 
off to her to paint. ^ 

Not to tease yoja-but they'll go on growing and being pleasant 
companions. As regards colour, no one of course sees it quite rightly. 
We have all our flaws and prejudices of sight, only, be convinced there 
is a RIGHT, mathematically commensurable with nature, and you will 
soon get to care for no ^ opinions,' but feel that you have become daily 
more true. 

So she promptly sets to work to paint one of the sods, and he is 
so delighted that he flashes off a telegram — 

The sod is quite lovely, the best bit of groundwork I ever got done, 
so many thanks, but don't tire yourself so again. 

^ A water-colour drawing of *Rock, Mom, and Ivy* bv K. G. ii now in the 
Sheffield Museum. Of its origin the catalogue says * The sketch was made by Miss 
Greenaway in consequence of Mr. Ruskin having told her one day at Brantwood, that 
she could draw pretty children daintily enough but she couldn't make a drawing of that 
rock. Miss Greenaway hastily produced this study of it, and presented it to Mr. Ruskin.' 


Ruskin Correspondence 

On great occasions, he gives her unqualified praise, which 
unqualified praise it may be noted not infrequently coincides with 
an improved condition in his health. 

Ruskin to Kate Grbbnaway 

lit//, Fei.j 84. 

I did not answer your question which of the girlies I liked best 
because it was unanswerable, yet something is to be said anent it. 

Of course the Queen of them all is the little one in front-but 
she's just a month or six weeks too young for «r/. Then there's the 
staff bearer on the right ( — the left, as they come) turning round ! ! !- 
but she's just three days and a minute or two too o/ii for me. Then 
there's the divine one with the dark hair, and the beatific one with the 
brown,-but L think thefvt both got lovers already and have only come 
to please the rest, and wouldn't be mine if I prayed them ever so. 
Then there is the little led beauty who is ruby and diamond in one,- 
but-but,-not quite tall enough, again-I think the wisest choice will 
be the pale one between the beatific and the divine ! 

But they're all ineffable !-I think you never did a more marvellous 
piece of beauty and it's a treasure to me like a caught dream. 

I wonder how you can bear to think of drawing >siy/-and how you 
mean to do it ! 

Sitting always tires me a good deal, but perhaps John will let me 
lie down in his room for a quarter of an hour before tea. 

Of this portrait he writes later in an undated letter of the 
same year : — 

I was with some saucy girls yesterday and I was saying how proud 
I was to have my portrait drawn by you-but only I had been so 
sleepy ! 

If the portrait was ever done, there is now no trace of it. 

Ruskin to Kate Greenaway 

BftANTWooD, 20/A, July [1884] 
(an entirely cloudlew morning and I wonderfully well). 

I am more cheered and helped by your success in this drawing than 
by anything that has happened to me for years ;-it is what I have 
been praying and preaching to everybody and never could get done ! 


Kate Greenaway 

I was nearly certain the power was in you, but never thought it 
would come out at a single true effort ! 

— ^The idea of your not seeing chiaroscuro !-the ins and outs of 
these leaves are the most rightly intricate and deep I ever saw-and the 
fern drawing at the one stroke is marvellous. 

It's a short post this morning and I've a lot to get ready for it-but 
I've such lovely plans in my head for all you say in your last two letters 
— ^And I'll forgive you the pig !-but we must draw dogs a little better. 
And we must learn just the rudiments of perspective-and draw feet 
and ankles,-and, — ^a little above^-and purple and blue things-and-the 
Sun not like a drop of sealing waz,-and then — Well,-we'll do all that 
first, won't we ? 

RusKiN TO Kate Green aw ay 

BkANTWOOD lyuly 22Hdf 1884]. 

The little hippopotamus with the curly tail /'/ lovely, and the 
explosive sun promises a lovely day, and it is so very joyful news to 
me that you like doing trees and see them all leaves and are going 
to do feet and ankles and be so good. There's no saying what 
wonderful things you may do, all in an instant, when once you've 
fought your way through the strait gate. And you will have the 
joy of delighting many more people beside me ; and of doing more 
good than any English artist ever yet did. And I'll put you in some 
of my books soon, as well as Miss A. and very thankfully. 

But you must have a few more sods, you know. 

One of the ^ lovely plans ' he has in his head is ^ a book on 
botany for you and me to do together — you do the plates and 
I the text — a hand-book of field botanv. It will be such a rest 
for you and such a help for-everybody f-chiefly me.* 

But it comes to nothing, for he finds that some one has 
taken the wind out of their sails and writes on Easter Day of the 
following year : — 

Something less strong than the Lamp-post. But I am ever so much 
more strong. . . . 

But oh, we're both cut out with our flower book — Here's a 
perfect primrose of a clergyman brought out such a book of flowers ! 
beats us all to sticks-buds and roots. I've got to write to him 
instantly and it's short post. 

Another plan is to paint with her ^ some things at Brantwood 
like Luca and the Old Masters-and cut out those dab and dash 



From a xvattr-colour drawing in the possession of Mrs. Arthur Severn,. 

Ruskin Correspondence 

people. I felt when I came out of the Academy as if my coat 
must be all over splashes.' 

If the Academy did not please, the Grosvenor of that year 
had no better fortune, for on May 3 he writes : — 

I was so curious to see those Grosvenor pictures that I went in 
with Joan yesterday and got a glimpse. — The only picture there 
worth looking at is Millais' Lome,^ and his straddling girl is a fright,^ 
and his Lady Campbell ' a horror. — As for that somebody in the sea,^ 
what did I tell you about model drawing? — People are getting 
absolutely brutified by it. There's another nearly as bad in the 
Suffolk St.^ In the great mediaeval times, painters could draw people 
dressed or undressed just as they chose-without the smallest weak- 
ness, shame, or conceit. Now, there is scarcely a foolish or bad 
feeling in one's head or body, that isn't made worse in the model- 
room. I scratched nearly every picture through in my catalogue 

Another plan was that they should both set to work to paint 
^ a purple kingfisher.' 

Couldn't you go to Mr. Fletcher and ask him to introduce you to 
Dr. Gunther, and ask Dr. Gunther to show you an Abyssinian king- 
fisher, and give you any one you like to draw out in a good light ? 

Sometimes Ruskin is betrayed into writing about himself. For 
example on March 20th, from Brantwood, when for the time being 
not only all the world seems wrong but in Professor Clifford's 
poignant words even ' The Great Companion ' seems dead : 

I didn't tell you if I was well — I'm not : nor have I been for 
some time,-a very steady gloom on me ; not stomach depression but 
the sadness of deliberately preparing for the close of life---drawing in, 
or giving up, all one's plans — thinking of one's beloved places, I shall 
never be there again-and so on. A great deal of the time I have lost 
in the mere friction of life-scarcely any sense of Peace, — ^And no hope 
of any life to come. I forget it all more in the theatre than anywhere — 
cathedrals are no good any more ! 

Mind you go and see Claudian ! ^ 

^ Portrait of the present Duke of Argyll. 

^ Portrait of Lady Campbell when a little girl — Miss Nina Lehmann. Painted in 
1865. ' Lady Campbell (Miss Nina Lehmann) on her marriage. 

* * Aphrodite ' by Philip Calderon, R.A. » The Society of British Artists. 

' For Claudian — the play produced by Wilson Barrett, who acted the title-role — 
Ruskin had a prodigious and rather unaccountable admiration. To one of the present 

137 18 

Kate Greenaway 

And on Dec. ist, from Oxford : — 

I've been in a hard battle here these eight week8,-the atheistic 
scientists all against me, and the young men careless and everything 
going wrong-so that I have had to fight with sadness and anger in all. 
my work. My last lecture is to be given to-morrow but I have been 
feeling more tired in this cold weather, and the correspondence is 
terrible. I have never a moment to draw or do anything I like- 
except throw myself on my bed and rest, or listen to any good music 
if I can get it quietly. 

From among his more general and less didactic epistles three 
may be given as examples. 

RusKiN TO Kate Greenaway 

Brantwooo, 23 Jan, ft^ 

. . . You must try to like the Alexanders-for they are Heaven's 
own doing-as much as Heaven ever allows to be seen of it. 

1 ought to be * good ' about everything, for good people love me,- 
and have loved. 

Here is the strangest thing has come to me to-day. 

L ^ was-I have told you have not I-a saint in her way,-and 

was constant in the habit of prayer. 

One evening — I may have told you this before, but it is better to 
have it in writing, — being out at a friend's house where there were a 
good many people-more or less known to her and to each other-one 

coming in told suddenly that L *s chief girl friend (she knew before 

of her illness) was at the point of death. 

There was a clergyman at the party and L asked him to pray for 

her friend-but he was taken aback being among all the young people, 

said he could not. — 'Then' — saidL , (only 18 at that time) */must.' 

— She made the whole company kneel down-and prayed so that they 
could not but join with her. 

And the girl was saved. Afterwards I used to see her, often 

enough. She married, to L 's great delight~a Highland religious 

squire-and she with her husband came to see me here, with their two 

writers, he said during the run of the piece : * I admired it so much that I went to see 
it three times out of pure enjoyment of it, although as a rule I cannot sit out a tragic 
play. It is not only that it is the most l>eautifully mounted piece I ever saw, but it 
is that every feeling that is expressed in the play, and every law of morality that is 
taught in it, is entirely right.* 

^ A young lady who died young. Her fine character and sweet disposition Ruskin 
greatly admired. 


Ruskin Correspondence 

children, boy and girl,-three years ago. Since then the children have 
remembered me, and sent me a card, for themselves at Christmas, this 

last year, to which I returned a letter of thanks addressed to D 

and F . My letter found little F on her death-bed. Her 

Father writes to me-yesterday, * I think you will be pleased to know 

that your letter addressed to D and F gave my darling in her 

pain a bright smile.' — And he encloses to me an envelope which F 

had addressed to me in return. But the letter-never, and yet~she 

has written one she knew not. For the envelope is written in L 's 

hand ! I could not tell the difference except in the letter J. of the 

Is not this a pretty little story ? 

Ruskin to Kate Grbbnaway 

BsANTwooD [March ^rd^ X8S4]. 

No wonder I couldn't understand about the letters-here*s one 
enclosed which ought to have been at Witley almost in time to receive 
you and has lain in my unanswered letter heap till an hour ago ! 

Vm so delighted about your beginning to like purple and blue 
flowers, though it's only for my sake. Not that I'm not proud of 
being able to make you like things ! 

I think flowers in my order of liking would come nearly like this. 

Wild rose 
Alpine rose 
Alpine gentian 
White Lily 
Purple Flag 
Purple convolvulus 
Carnation — all the tribe 
Pansy, all the tribe 
Thistle — all the tribe 
Daisy and Hyacinth 
Snowdrop and Crocus 

I only put the last so low because they have such an unfair 
advantage over all the rest in coming iirst,~and of course Fve some 
out of the way pets like the ozalis and anagallis but then tAey have an 
unfair advantage in always growing in pretty places. The wood 
anemone should go with the daisy, and the ^Blossoms' apple and 
almond-hawthorn and cherry, have of course a separate queendom. 

I must really go and look for that lovely girl you gave me with 
basket of pansies ! 

Kate Greenaway 

RusKiN TO Kate Greenaway 

Bkantwood [AiarcA zind, 1884]. 

What a nice letter — and I'm so pleased that your Father was 
surprised, and that Johnnie liked *Unto This Last '-and that you 
think you'll like some more. I think I tired myself with trying to 
draw your little girlie yesterday-she's so hard, and I'm as lazy to-day 
as ever I can be, and don't care for anything but a French Novel, about 
police ! And I'm ashamed to read it at 3 in the afternoon-and 
it's wet-and I can't do St. George's accounts-and I should like some 

tea and muffins-and-there are no muffins in Coniston 

I feel so listless because there's no time left now to do anything. 

Oh dear, think how happy you are with all that power of drawing- 
and ages to come to work in and paint Floras and Norahs and 
Fairies and Mary's and Goddesses and-bodices-oh me, when will 
you do me one without any ? 

I must take to my French novel, there's no help for it — Mercy om 
us, and it's two hours to teatime ! and the room so quiet, and all my 
books and things about me — and I can't do a thing — 

Wouldn't you like a photograph of me like that ? 

No doubt, it is difEcult to help feeling at times that Ruskin's 
admiration for K. G. partakes too much of hyperbole. And 
yet we cannot but confess that as he was honest in welcoming 
the Pre-Raphaelites so was he honest in his greeting of her. He 
was weary of the artificial pedantry of those who had elaborated 
an artistic code ' with titles and sub-titles applicable to every form 
of [art] and tyrannous over every mode of sentiment/ and 
he acclaimed an exquisite small voice, which sang its little 
song in its own sweet tone of purity and in its own tender uncon- 
ventional way. What he meant was in no wise that she was 
cleverer than other people. He over and over again tells her 
one way or another that she was no great executant. But she 
had that rarer gift of seeing old things through new eyes and 
giving artistic expression with curious and delightful success to 
these newer and fresher views. And as Ruskin was by nature 
vehement and by practice a controversialist, he could scarcely 
resist being led from time to time into italicizing his words and 
emphasizing his verdicts. 

In the meanwhile the warmest affection had ripened between 
Mr. Ruskin's cousin and adopted daughter, Mrs. Arthur Severn, 




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Friendship for Mrs. Arthur Severn 

and Kate Greenaway. Like most others, Kate had been 
fascinated by the charm, goodness, and ability of Mrs. Severn ; 
and so enlisted her sympathy that when her friend fell ill, Kate 
opened her heart to her, like a child : — 


Wednesday [lo Dec, 1884]. 

Dearest Mrs. Severn, — 

Poor Dear. I*m so sorry. I hope it will be as short in 
staying as it seems severe. 

I'm so sorry. 

I think I will put oflF coming till next week, for then, I hope, I'll 
be stronger. I am very unwell again to-day — so absurdly weak. 

And you, too, would not be well enough to see me this week. It 
is such hard work, isn't it, talking when you don't feel well. Not 
that I can or will say I felt that with regard to you, you always seem 
so cheerful and comforting — that you'd do me good at any time. Poor 

But I will write again, and I'll hope to see you quite recovered. 
My mother is very ill, too, with a bad cold and cough. 

Good-bye. How sweet of you to write to me at all, feeling so ill. 
I hope you're feeling better this morning. With, Dearest, lots of love. 
Your affectionate, K. G. 

I'm very^ ^^ry^ very sorry. 
Poor Dear. 

A little later on when Mrs. Severn's young sons were about to 
be sent to their first boarding school, Kate sent a characteristic 
note of sympathy : — 

My dearest Mrs. Severn — ... I wonder if I shall see you 
to-morrow at the R. A. I shall be there till nearly 4 — but I remember. 
Your boys are going to-morrow I hope you won't feel it dreadfully. 
But I should think they will be happy there. It is so much nicer 
than quite a strange school and strange people. Please feel they will 
be very happy. . . . Your very aflFectionate K. G. 

And for Mrs. Severn's little daughter, Violet, Kate Greenaway 
composed the doleful history of a naughty girl, such as most 
delights the mind of a tiny child. That characteristic booklet, 
delightfully sketched in pencil and colour. Miss Violet Severn 
has kindly allowed to be reproduced here. 



1885 AND 1886 


On Monday, February i6th, 1885, Miss Greenaway moved to 
Frognal, into the house designed for her by Mr. Norman Shaw, 
her home until her death. Of her experiences as a house-builder 
she has left no record, and Mr. Norman Shaw kept none of her 
letters. As there were so few neighbouring houses at the time, 
and as some number was necessary, the architect suggested the 
adoption of ^ 50,' for it was unlikely that a higher number would 
eventually be reached. When in due time the other plots were 
filled up. Miss Greenaway's house became No. 39, and to that it 
was altered. This detail, trivial as it is, is mentioned, as the reader 
might be misled into believing that Miss Greenaway had at some 
unspecified time changed her Hampstead home. 

The scheme did not commend itself to Ruskin. On the ist 
of the previous October he had written from Kenmure Castle: — 

I could not get your dainty letter until to-day. The two sweeties 
in it are indeed beautiful, and only need to be painted larger to become 
a most glorious picture. I must stand over you while you paint them 
again with a big brush. But I am aghast at the house at Hampstead 
and quite resolved that you shanU live in London. Of course if you 
had stayed at Scarborough you would have begun drawing the children 
at the shore, and that was just what I wanted. — But wait till I come 
and talk to you-I'll make your life a burden to you if you live in 
London ! If you had come to Norwood instead of Hampstead, there 
would have been some sense in it-IVe no patience with you. 

And you must give up drawing round hats. It's the hats that 


The Move to Frognal 

always save you from having to do a background-and I'm not going 
to be put off with them any more. 

Just prior to the move Ruskin wrote : — 

You're not going to call your house a Villa ! ? — Could you call it 
Kate's State-or Kitty's Green-or Katherine's Ne8t,-or Brownie's Cell- 
or Camomile Court-or Lassie's Leisure~or the Romp's Rest-or-some- 
thing of that sort ? 

And again : — 

I will take real care about the addresses-but I really must have a 
pretty one for the New House-you don't suppose I'm going to write 
Frognal every day of my life — It might as well be Dognal-Hognal- 
Lognal-I won't. If it is to be I'll have it printed ! ! ! 

But Kate saved him the trouble, for thenceforward she kept 
him supplied with sheaves of envelopes addressed to herself in her 
own handwriting. 

The day before the actual flitting he took care to write a letter 
to welcome her in the new house. 

Brantwood, 15 February 1885. 

I hope you are beginning by this time in the afternoon to be very 
happy in thinking you're really at home on the Hill, now,-and that 
you will find all the drawers slide nicely, corners fit and firesides cosy, 
and that the flowers are behaving prettily, and the chimnies-draw-as 
well as you. — That's a new pun, all my own-only think ! It isn't 
a very complimentary one-but indeed-the first thing to be seriously 
thought of in a new house is chimnies,-one can knock windows out- 
or partitions down-build out oriels-and throw up turrets-but never 
make a chimney go that don't choose. 

Anyhow — I am glad you are settled somewhere-and that I shan't 
have my letters to direct nobody knows where. — And let us bid, both, 
farewell to hollow ways, that lead only to disappointment-and know 
what we're about,-and not think truths teazing, but enjoy each other's 
sympathy and admiration-and think always-how nice we are ! 

No sooner was she settled than she began to receive uninvited 
attentions. On the 4th M^rch she wrote to Mrs. Severn ; — 

There was a horrid man drawing the outside [of the house] all day. 
So I suppose he is cribbing Mr. Shaw's design, and going to put my 
house up somewhere else, who knows where. 

Kate Greenaway 

Her friends were not all entirely satisfied with it. On 25th 
March she wrote : — 

My dearest Mrs. Severn, — 

Mr. Locker came to see this new studio yesterday. He 
said, * What a frightful falling off from the old one J Isn't that sad ? — 
but I fear true. 

But she was pleased to think that although it was not so pretty 
as her last studio, it was larger, lighter, and altogether more 

The household included Kate's father and mother and her 
brother, John Greenaway. Mr. Greenaway was still practis- 
ing as a wood-engraver, with an office in the City ; Mr. John 
Greenaway was the sub- editor of the Journal of the Chemical 
Society^ a post he holds at the present time ; while Mrs. Green- 
away managed the domestic afiairs. Of the routine of Miss 
Greenaway's life at this time Mr. John Greenaway writes : — 

Of my sister at work, we saw very little. She very wisely made 
it a fixed rule that, during working hours, no one should come into 
the studio save on matters of urgency. Her great working time was 
the morning, so she was always an early riser and finished breakfast by 
eight o'clock. Her most important work was done between then and 
luncheon time (i o'clock). Practically she never went out in the 
morning. After luncheon she usually worked for an hour or two, 
unless she was going out anywhere for the afternoon ; and then went 
for a walk on the Heath, and came back to tea. The evenings up to 
eight o'clock, when we had a meal that was a sort of compromise 
between dinner and supper, were spent in letter-writing, making dresses 
for models, occasionally working out schemes and rough sketches for 
projected books and such-like things ; but all finished work was done 
in the morning or afternoon. In the summer too, a good deal of this 
time was spent in the garden seeing to her flowers. After supper she 
generally lay on a sofa and read until she went to bed at about 
10 o'clock. 

She could not stand late hours and seldom went out in the 
evening. For the same reason she very seldom dined out. Tea-time 
was always her time for going out to see friends, or for them to 
see her. 

The change of abode was a great success ; but in Miss 
Greenaway's correspondence we have at this period frequent refer- 


Miss Evans 

ences to domestic worries and minor troubles. For instance, she 
writes to Miss Evans : — 

It is quite tragic about all your servants going. Have you got a 
cook yet ? You get a better chance of hearing something about them 
before you engage them than we do. 

I almost HATE ours ! They pretended they could do such a lot. 
You would have thought that one was used to distinguished beings the 
way she went on. We felt quite vulgar. She spoke of the puddings 
as sweets and when I tried to convey to her mind that in our house 
they were called puddings she said, 'Ah ! 1 see ! you prefer comfort 
to style ! ' which is quite true, I do— only I don't get it at her hands, 
and as for style ! — unless it consists in a nice coating of dirt over every- 
thing, I don't know where that is either. I hope your fate won't be 

The work of 1885 has been described in the last chapter. It 
only remains to complete thq year's record by extracts from 
Ruskin's letters, which in consequence of another severe illness 
break off abruptly on May the 22nd. 

He had now retired into seclusion at Brantwood, where he 
was as happy as failing health would permit in the company of 
Mrs. Arthur Severn, the ^Joan* of the letters, and her husband 
and family who lived with him. 

Now it was that he set to work on that remarkable fragment of 
autobiography published at intervals under the title of Praterita^ 
to which allusion has already been made \ and he speaks of it in 
the following extracts from letters of this period : — 

Rusk IN to Kate Greenaway 

Brantwood, 4M, Jan, (1885). 

It was nice hearing of your being made such a grand Lioness of, 
at the tea-and of people's praising me to you because they had found 
out you liked it-and of Lady Airlie and old times. 

I've begun my autobiography-it will be so dull !, and so 

meek ! !-you never did ! 

I write a little bit every morning and am going to label old things 
it refers to-little drawings and printings and the like. I'm not going 
to talk of anybody more disagreeable than myself-so there will be 
nothing for people to snap and growl at. What shall 1 say about 
people who I think liked me ? that they were very foolish ? 

I got a dainty little letter from my fifteener to-day, and have felt a 

145 19 

Kate Greenaway 

little better ever since. She's at the seaside and says there's nothing 
on the shore-lVe told her to look-and that I should like to write the 
^ Natural History of a dull Beach.' 

RusKiN TO Kate Greenaway 

Brantwood, 7M, Jan, 1885. 

The auto won't be a pretty book at all, but merely an account 
of the business and general meaning of my life. As I work at it 
every morning, (about half an hour only) I have very bitter feelings 
about the waste of years and years in merely looking at things-all I've 
got to say is-I went there-and saw-that. But did nothing. If only 
I had gone on drawing plants-or clouds-or — . 

He is still full of interest in her work, unsparing of criticism 
and reproof where he considers them needful. On Jan. 2nd : 

You are always straining after a fancy instead of doing the thing 
as it is. Never mind its being pretty or ugly, but get as much as you 
can of the facts in a few minutes and you will find strength and ease 
and new fancy and new right coming all together. 

On Jan. 29th : — 

I think the reason Miss A.^ puzzles you is that you never make 
quite a sincere study, you are always making a pretence of striving for 
an ideal. 

I want you to learn nature perfectly-then Miss A. will not puzzle 
you — though you will do quite different things. I am so glad you like 

And on Jan. 4th : — 

Fm very glad you want to paint like Gainsborough. 

But you must not try for it — He is inimitable, and yet a bad master. 
Keep steadily to deep colour and Carpaccio-with white porcelain and 
Luca — Vou may try a Gainsborough every now and then for play. 

But he can also be unstinting of praise. On Feb. 8th : — 

This is quite the most beautiful and delightful drawing you've 
ever given me, and I accept it with the more joy that it shows me all 
your powers are in the utmost fineness and fulness, and that you are 
steadily gaining in all that is best-and indeed will do many things — 
heaven sparing you and keeping your heart in peace, — more than [have] 
ever yet been seen in all human dreams. 

^ Miss Francesca Alexander. 

Ruskin Correspondence 

On April 7th : — 

Ah ! just wait till you sec ! Vm quite crushed ! — Never knew such 
pink and blue could be found in Boxes-and not a touch of camomile 
anywhere ! and not a single leaf in an attitude ! 

Well-those anemones are a thing to tell of! What a heavenly 
place London might be-if there was nobody in it. 

Yes, you SHALL draw the tulip this time-if there's a bit of 
possible tulip in you. I have my doubts ! 

And on May ist : — 

I never was so much pleased with any drawing yet as with this, 
for it is complete in idea^ and might become a consummate picture, 
with very little effort more, nor were ever faces more lovely than ' 
those of the central girl and the one on her right hand. You must 
paint me this some day~in Mays to come, when you're doing all sorts 
of lovely things at Brantwood, and the books give you no more trouble 
and yet bring you in showers of gold like the celandines. 

And I'll try not to tease. It's too sweet of you doing this lovely 
thing for me. 

And~what pleases me best of all's the beauty of the rhyme. It is 
higher in rhythmic power and quality than anything I've read of 
yours, and is in the entirely best style of poetry. — I believe the half of 
your power is not shown yet. 

You have given me a very happy Mayday. 

Suddenly we get a glimpse of his tender feeling for, and pretty 
sympathy with, her beloved flower : — 

Ozalis out everywhere-wanting to be drawn. They say they'd 
like to feel how it feels, for they never were drawn in their lives. 

For a moment he returns, on July 3rd, to the old subject of 
drawing from the nude and incidentally shows that he looks upon 
her as an exception to what he considers should be the general 
rule : — 

What you have first to do is to learn to draw ankles and feet 
because you are one of the instances the enemy have of the necessity 
of the nude. 

The moment you have any leisure for study-feet-feet-and arms. 
No more shoes, come what will of it. — To the seashore-as soon as may 
be — Until you come to Brant [/>. Brantwood]. 


Kate Greenaway 

And every now and again Ruskin shows his unabated enthu- 
siasm for new knowledge and his gusto for new studies : — 

Please ask Johnnie what colour frozen hydrogen 

is, and if transparent or opaque. The rascally chemistry book gives mc 
six pages of bad drawings of machines,-and supplies me with a picture- 
to aid my imagination-of a man in badly made breeches turning a 
.wheel !-but does not tell me whether even liquid hydrogen is trans- 
parent or not,-they only say it is * steel-blue.' 

On July 26 : — 

This has been a very bright day to me, not least in the thoughts of 
this-but in other ways very fortunate and helpful, — IVe found out 
why clouds float, for one thing ! ! !-and think what a big thing that is ! 

In reply to Kate's request for information on the cloud 
discovery he writes on July 28th : — 

Clouds float because the particles of water in them get warmed by 
the sun, and warm the air in the little holes between them-then that 
air expands and carries them up. When they cool it comes down and 
then they stick together and come down altogether. 

But Miss Greenaway was not yet satisfied, so to appease her 
curiosity he makes further answer on July 29th : — 

Clouds are warmer or colder according to the general temperature 
of the air-but always enable the sun to warm the air within them, in 
the fine weather when they float high. I have yet to learn all about 
the wet weather on this new condition myself. 

The following letters of the year speak for themselves : — 

Ruskin to Kate Greenaway 

^ BsANTWooD, 15 Jan. 85. 

You say in one of-four I-unanswered [letters], you wonder how far I 
see you as you see yourself? No one sees us as we see ourselves-all 
that first concerns us must be the care that we do see ourselves as far as 
possible rightly. 

In general, young people (and children, like you) know very little 
of themselves ; yet something that nobody else can know. My know- 
ledge of people is extremely limited, continually mistaken-and what is 


Ruskin Correspondence 

founded on experience, chiefly of young girls,-and this is nearly useless 
in your case, for you are mixed child and woman,-and therefore 
extremely puzzling to me. 

But I think you may safely conclude that-putting aside the artistic 
power which is unique in its way, the rest of you will probably be seen 
more truly by an old man of-765, which is about my age, than by 
yourself-at almost any age you ever come to. 

I note with sorrow that the weather bothers you. So it does me- 
but when the pretty times come, jr^ir can enjoy them, / can't. 

Though I do a little like to see snow against blue sky still-to-day 
there's plenty of both 

You and your publishers are both and all geese. — You put as much 
work into that Language of Flowers as would have served three years 
bookmaking if you had only drawn boldly, coloured truly, and given 6 
for 60 pages. The public will always pay a shilling for a penny's 
worth of what it likes,-it won't pay a penny for a pound's worth of 
camomile tea. Tou draw-let me colour next time ! 

Ruskin to Kate Grbbnaway 

BiANTwooD, 19 Jan, 85. 

The book I send to-day is of course much more completed in shade 
than your outlines ever need, or ought to be, but I believe you would 
find extreme benefit in getting into the habit of studying from nature 
with the pen point in this manner and forcing yourself to complete the 
study of a head, cap, hair and all-whether it succeeded or not to your 
mind, in the time you now give to draw the profile of lips and chin. 

You never need fear losing refinement,-you would gain steadily 
in fancy, knowledge and power of expression of solid form, and 
complex character. Note especially in these drawings that their 
expressional power depends on the rightness, not the delicacy of their 
lines, and is itself most subtle where they are most forcible. In the 
recording angels, pages 22, 23, the face of 23 is beautiful because its 
lines are distinct-22 fails wholly because the faint proof of the plate 
has dimmed them. 

Tell me what the publishers * propose ' now, that I may sympathise 
in your indignation-and * propose ' something very different. 

I can scarcely conceive any sale paying the expenses of such a book 
as the Language of Flowers-but think you could produce one easily 
with the original outlay of-say at the outsidest, jf 500, which you 
would sell 50,000 of at a shilling each in a month. 

Tell me how you like this little head and tail piece herewith. I'm 
going to use them for a little separate pamphlet on schools. 


Kate Greenaway 

RvsKiN TO Kate Gkebnaway 

J put two P.M. 13 Fi6, 85. BtANTWOOD. 

Am I busy ? Well-you shall just hear what IVe done to-day. 

7~i P^^^ Coffee. Read Northcote's convenations marking extracts 
for lecture. 

^ 7-8. Dress. 

8-J past. Write two pages of autobiography. 

^ past 8-^ 9. Lesson to Jane Anne on spelling and aspiration. 
Advise her to get out of the habit of spelling at, hat. 

i 9-half past. Correct press of chapter of Modem Painters. 

I 9-|- 10. Breakfast-read letters-devise answers to smash a book- 
seller, and please an evangelical clergyman-also to make Kate under- 
stand what I'm about and put Joan's mind at ease 

Wished I had been at the Circus. Tried to fancy Clemmie ' all 
eyes.' Thought a little mouth and neck might be as well besides. 
Pulled grape hyacinth out of box, and put it in water. Why isn't it 
blue ? 

^10. Set to work again. Finished revise of M. P. chapter. Then 
took up Miss Alex, next number. Fitted pages etc. Wrote to Miss 
A. to advise her of proof coming. 

Wrote to Clergyman and Joan and smashed bookseller. 

^12. Examined chess game by correspondence. Sent enemy a 
move. Don't think she's much chance left. 

1. Looked out some crystals, * Irish Diamonds ' for school at Cork. 
Meditated on enclosed mistress' and pupils' letters-still to be answered 
before resting^— Query, how ? 

i past one. Lunch. Peasoup. 

} to two. Meditate letter to Colonel Brackenbury on the Bride 
of Abydos. Meditate what's to be said to K. 

2. Baxter comes in-receives directions for manifold parcels and 
Irish diamonds-think I may as well write this, thus. Wild rainy day. 
Wrote Col. Brackenbury while your ink was drying to turn leaves-r 
now for Irish Governess,-and my mineralogist-and that's all ! 

RusKiN TO ELate Greenaway 

Whit- Black Monday, 85 
[Af^ 26, London]. 

I was down to very low tide to-day, and am still, but partly rested, 
still my head not serving me,-the driving about town continually tires 
me fearfully,-then I get vexed to be tired-then I can't eat because I'm 
vexed-then I can't sleep and so it goes on. I've been thinking rather 


From a vfater-coicttr drawing in the fossestion of Harry y, l''iitck^ Esq, 

Ruskin's Illness 

sorrowfully over the Marigold Garden, which is no garden, but a 
mystification-the rather that I saw a real marigold garden at Mr. 
Hooper's the wood engraver's on Thursday and was amazed. And I 
mourn over your not showing me things till it's too late to do anything 
less, or more. 

I'm at the saddest part of my autobiography-and think extremely 
little of myself — then and now — I was sulky and quarrelled with all life 
-just because I couldn't get the one thing I chose to fancy. — Now-l 
can get nothing I fancy-all the world ebbing away, and the only 
question for me now-What next ? 

If you could only change souls with me for five minutes ! — What a 
wise Kate you/Would be, when you got your own fanciful one back 

The melancholy tone of the last letter was a pathetic prelude 
to the very serious illness of this year, of which we find in her 
laconic diary the following unusually concise entries : — 

July 31. He is much worse to-day. 
Aug. II. Still as ill. 

13. No change yet, still so quiet. 

14. Slightly better. 

15. Still better. 
19. Still better and downstairs. 

24. Still getting better but so slowly. 

25. Still better. 




„ 26. First drive. 

„ 28. Out in garden alone. 

By January of the next year (1886) Mr. Ruskin had sufficiently 
recovered to resume work on his autobiography and wrote on the 
22nd : — 

I am so very thankful you like this eighth number so much, for I 
was afraid it would begin to shock people. I have great pleasure in 
the thing myself — it is so much easier and simpler to say things face to 
face like that, than as an author. The ninth has come out very 
prettily, I think — 

Again on the 27th : — 

I am so very very glad you like Praeterita-for it is-as you say- 
the ' natural ' me-only of course peeled carefully — It is different from 
what else I write because-you know~I seldom have had to describe 
any but heroic-or evil-characters-and this watercress character is so 
much easier to do-and credible and tasteable by everybody's own lips. 

Kate Greenaway 

And on Feb. 23rd : — 

It is lovely of you thinkiag of illustrating the Hfe-I am greatly set 
up in the thought of it. But wait a while. I hope it will be all more 
or less graceful. But I fear it will not be cheerful enough. Til try 
and keep it as Katish as-the vtry truth can be. 

Clotilde is itill living, (I believe)— Baron ne Du Quesne,~a managing 
chStclaine in mid-France. 

On March 30 he is still insistent with criticism : — 

I can only answer to-day the important question about the green 
lady — ' You mean she doesn't stand right ? ' 

—My dear, I mean much worse than that. I 

/^ ' JV' mean there's nothing of her to stand with ! She has 

no waist-no thighs-no legs-no feet. — There's nothing 

;r the dress at all You recollect I 

: that when you were here, I told you you had 
r drawn a bit of drapery in your life. 
iVhen you are inclined to try to do so-go and copy 
ell as you can a bit of St. Jerome's in the Nat. 
.-^nd copy a bit of photogiaph-if you are ashamed 
lint in the gallery, and send it me. 
' gave you a task to do at the same time-which 
never did— but went and gathered my best cherries 
instead-which I wanted for my own eating- 
and expected me to be pleased with your trying 
to paint them ! 

But soon she is made happier by unquali- 
fied praise : — 

You never did anything more lovely than 

the little flowers to the poem-and the poem 

On a Letter lo Ruikin. itself is most lovely in its outflow from the 

heart. I am very thankful to have set the 

heart free again-and I hope that your great genius will soon have joy 

in its own power. 

This year Ruslcin was occupying much of his leisure by 
working on drawings which he had made in early life. Beginning 
by sending them to K. G. for criticism, he ended by insisting 
on her keeping for herself one out of every ten, finding much 
amusement in guessing which would be her choice week by 
week. The whole thing was a pretty contest in generosity 
between the great critic and his devoted admirer. 

Ruskin Correspondence 

On May 21 he writes : — 

If you only knew the delight it is to me to send either you or 
Johnnie anything that you like ! But — ^not to worry you with the 
thought of their coming out of my drawers, I shall send Johnnie some 
only to look at and send back at leisure. — 

VouVe a nice Katie-you-to talk of generosity-after giving me 
about j^2000 worth of drawings as if they were leaves off the trees. 

And on June 8 : — 

You cannot think what a real comfort and help it is to me that 
you see anything in my drawings. They are all such mere hints of 
what I want to do, or syllables of what I saw, thap I never think-or at 
least never thought, they could give the least pleasure to any one but 
myself-and that you-especially who draw so clearly, should under- 
stand the confused scratches of them is very wonderful and joyful 
to me. 

I had fixed on the road through the water for you, out of that lot in 
my own mind ;~it is like you, and it's so nice that you found it out,-and 
that you like the hazy castle of Annecy too. But it shall be Abingdon 
this time — It will be very amusing to me to see which you like, out of 
each ten ; but I think I shall know now pretty well. 

Ruskin is still full of schemes of collaboration which, in his 
opinion, will draw out her best powers so that her gifts may be 
made more useful to others. 

Ruskin to Katb Greenaway 

BiANTWooD, 27 April 86. 

It has been a perfect and thrice lovely April morning-absolutely 
calm, with dew on fields, and the wood anemones full out everywhere : 
and now coming in, before breakfast, I get your delicious letter about 
Beauty and the Beast,-I am so very thankful that you like it so~ 
and will do it. For I want intensely to bring one out for you- 
your book-I your publisher, charging you printing and paper only. 
Hitherto I*m sure your father and Johnnie must think I've been simply 
swindling you out of your best drawings and-a good deal more. 

But now I want you to choose me the purest old form of the story- 
to do-such illustrations as you feel like doing. — Pencil sketch first at 
ease. Then-separately, a quite severe ink line-cheaply and without 
error cuttable-with no bother to either of us,-so much plain shade 
as you like. To be published without colour, octavo, but with design 

153 20 

Kate Greenaway 

for a grand hand- coloured quarto edition afterwards. I'll write a 
preface-«nd perhaps with your help, venture on an additional incident 
or two ? 

Yesterday was lovely too-and I couldn't sit down to my letters — 
nor get the book sent. 

It is about Sir Philip Sidney and an older friend of his at Vienna — 
mostly in letters.^ Read only what you like-there's lots of entirely use- 
less politics which shouldn't have been printed. But you will find 
things in it-and it is of all things good for you to be brought into 
living company of these good people of old days 

And again on May 7th : — 

I wonder if you could put in writing about any particular face-what 
it is that makes it pretty ? What curl of mouth, what lifting of eyelid, 
and the like-and what part of it you do first. 

I think a new stimulus might be given to drawing in general by 
•teaching some simple principles to girls about drawing each other's 

Then there is a recurrence of his illness and a three months' 
cessation of letters. In his rambling talk he is heard to say, ^ The 
only person I am sorry to disappoint is poor Miss Greenaway.' 

Now again we find pathetic little notes in her diary : — 

uly 5. Heard this morning he is ill. Had a letter from him. 

uly 6. Not quite so ill to-day. 

uly 10. Still ill. 

uly 14. A little better now. 

By September he is at the seaside and again able to use his 
pen, although too weary and depressed even to make use of that 
^ Natural History of a dull Beach ' which he carried in his mind 
but which was destined never to be written. 

RusKiN TO Kate Greenaway 

Sunday [Sep, 19, 1886]. 

I'm sending two miles that you may get your-this-whatever you 
call it-it isn't a letter-and I dare say you won't get it. I haven't got 
yours-thcy won't give anything to anybody on Sunday !-and I'm sure 

' The Correspondence of Sir Philip Sidney and Hubert Zuinguet. Now first collected and 
translated fiom the Latin tvith Notes and Memoir of Sidney, By Stewart A. Pears (London, 
William Pickering, 1845). 

Ruskin Correspondence 

yours is a beauty-in the post office over the hill there, and I can't get 
it and IVe nothing to do and I can't think of anything to think ofy- 
and the sea has no waves in it-and the sand has no shells in it-and 
the shells-oystershells-at lunch had no oysters in them bigger than that 
[a rough drawing of a small oyster] in a shell-and tAat wouldn't 
come out ! 

And the wind's whistling through the keyhole-and I ought to go 
out-and don't want to-and here's Baxter coming to say I must, and to 
take *tAss* to Morecambe. 

Much good may it do you. 

Soon however he is full of a new plan and once more anxious 
for her co-operation : — 

RusuN TO Kate Grbbnaway 

Brant WOOD, 
Saturday [Ntw. 2, 1886]. 

It rejoices me so that you enjoy those old master drawings. 

It comes, in the very moment when I wanted it-this British M. 
enthusiasm of yours. 

I'm going to set up a girls' drawing school in London— a room 
where nice young girls can go-and find no disagreeable people or 
ugly pictures. They must all be introduced by some of my own 
sweetest friends-by K. G., by Lilias T.^ by Margaret B. J.* -by my 
own sec. Lolly ^-or by such as ever and anon may be enrolled as 
Honorary Students. 

And I want you at once to choose, and buy for me beginning with 
enclosed cheque, all the drawings by the old masters reproduced to 
your good pleasure — Whatever you like, I shall-and the school will be 
far happier and more confident in your choice ratified by mine. 

And I will talk over every bit of the plan with you-as you have 
time to think of it. 

— I'm not quite sure I shall like M/V American book as well as Bret 
Harte-but am thankful for anything to make me laugh,-if it does. 

This year (1886), besides the Almanack of which 45,000 copies 
were issued, the American sales doubling those of England, and a 
large number of designs for Christmas Cards, A Apple Pie^ 
published by George Routledge & Sons, had a gratifying success. 

^ Miss Trotter. ^ Miss Bume- Jones. 

' Laurence Hilliard,.'Ruslcin's secretary. 


Kate Greenaway 

England took 7,000 copies, America 3,500, and France 3,000. 
But it did not by any means meet with Ruskin's approval, and on 
Nov, 9 he writes from Brant wood : — 

RusKiN TO Kate Greenaway 

I am considerably vexed about Apple Pie. I really think you 
ought seriously to consult me before determining on the lettering of 
things so important — 

The titles are simply bill-sticking of the vulgarest sort, over the 
drawings — ^nor is there one of those that has the least melodious charm 
as a colour design-while the feet-from merely shapeless are becoming 
literal paddles or flappers-and in the pretty-though ungrammatical- 
* Eat it ' are real deformities. 

All your faults are gaining on you, every hour that you don't fight 
them — 

I have a plan in my head for organising a girls' Academy under 
you ! (a fine mistress you'll make-truly-) Lilias Trotter and Miss 
Alexander for the Dons, or Donnas of it-and with every book and 
engraving that I can buy for it-of noble types-with as much of cast- 
drawing, and coin ^-as you can use,-and two or three general laws of 
mine to live under ! and spending my last breath in trying to get some 
good into you ! 

The next letter refers to an advance copy of The ^een of the 
Pirate /r/f, by Bret Harte^ Illustrated by Kate Greenaway^ with 
many charming coloured engravings, yet in our opinion certainly 
not deserving his estimate of it as ^ the best thing she had ever 
done.' The fact is the drawings are treated in a more natural 
and less quaint and decorative manner than was common with 
her : and that is what her mentor had always been clamouring 

RusKiN TO Kate Greenaway 

Brantwood [Nov. 14, 1886]. 

Waiting for post in expectation of Bret Harte. My dear, you 
must always send me all you do. If I don't like it-the public will,- 
if I do-there's always one more pleasure in my disconsolate life. 

^ Rutkin had much faith in the educational value of drawings from Greek coins of 
the finest period. 


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Kate Greenaway 

And you ought to feel that when I do like it-nobody likes it so 
much !-nor half nor a quarter so much. 

Yes, it has come-you're a dear good Katie-and it's lovely. The 
best thing you have ever done-it is so real and natural. I do hope the 
public will feel with me for once-yes, and for twice-and many times 
to come. 

It is all delightful, and the text also-and the print. You may do 
more in colour however, next time. 

Then there comes a note of criticism and a note of praise. 
Of criticism, harking back to A Apple Pie^ in reply to a sort 
of good-natured protest from his resolute victim : — 

But I never do scold you ! never think of such a thing ! I only 
say Pm-sorry. I have no idea what state of mind you are ia when 
you draw stockings down at the heel, and shoes with the right foot in 
the left and the left in the right-and legs lumpy at the shins-and 
shaky at the knees. And when, ever-did you put red letters like the 
bills of a pantomime-in any of mj drawings ? and why do it to the 
public ? 

Of praise which in this case has been unduly withheld : — 

I've never told you how much I liked a long blue nymph with a 
branch of roses who came a month ago. It is a heavenly little 
puckered blue gown with such a lovely spotty-puckery waistband and 
collar, and a microscopic and microcosmic cross of a brooch, most 
beautiful to behold. What is she waving her rosebranch for ? and 
what is she saying ? 

Then comes the only letter written by Miss Greenaway to 
Ruskin before 1887 and preserved by him, and it is followed by a 
few letters of a general character from him to her. 

Kate Greenaway to Ruskin 

50, Fkognal, 30 Nov. 1886. 

Yesterday was such a nice day. I had your letter in the morning — 
then the sun came out — then I went to see Mrs. Allingham in the 
afternoon who was in town for a few days — with such a lot of beautiful 

drawings they were lovely — the most truthful, the most like things 

really look — ^and the most lovely likeness. I've felt envious all the 
hours since — there was one cottage and garden with a deep background 


From a vfoter'Colour drawing in the ffosuuion of Stuart M. Samttel, Esq., M.P. 

Ruskin Correspondence 

of pines — it was a marvel of painting — then such a rose bush — then, a 
divine little picture — of her own beautiful little boy sitting on a garden 
seat with a girl picking red currants — and a background of deep laurels. 
You can't think the beauty of it — and many many many more — all so 
lovely, so beautiful. She asked me could I tell her anything — give her 
advice — and I could not help saying, I can give you nothing but entire 
praise and the deepest admiration. 

She asked after you, — and she said she had often wished to give 
you a little drawing — but she didn't know if you would be pleased to 
have it — I don't think I left any doubt in her mind. She asked me 
what subject I thought you would like best — I said I fancied a pretty 
little girl with a little cottage or cottage garden — so I hope it will come 
to pass — I think it will. — You will be so pleased, only you tviUlike it better 
than miney but Mrs. Allingham is the nicest of people. I always feel I 
like her so much whenever I see her. And I wish you could have 
seen those drawings yesterday for they would have been a deep joy to 
you. She is going to have an exhibition of 40 in London soon. You 
ought to see them. 

Well — I hope you're feeling better. I hope I will have a letter 
in the morning. I have enjoyed the Fraterita very much, it is so 
cheering to have it coming again — 

RusKiN TO Katb Grbbnaway 

Bkamtwood, I Dec, 1886. 

That is delightful hearing about Mrs. Allingham. I'm so very 
glad she's so nice as to want to give me a picture. Please tell her 
there couldn't be anything more delicious to me-both in the sense of 
friendship and in the possession. 

I am very thankful she is doing-as you say-in beauty, and so much 

And it is right that you should be a little envious of her realisation- 
while yet you should be most thankful for your own gift of endless 
imagination. The realism is in your power whenever you choose. 

RusKiN TO Kate Grbbnaway 

Brantwood \pte, 12, 1886]. 

I do like you to have the books I have cared for,-and-too securely 
I say-there is no chance of my ever wanting to read these more. My 
only pleasures now are in actual nature or art-not in visions. 

All national costumes, as far as I know, are modern. The con- 

161 21 

Kate Greenaway 

dicions of cnde eitablithcd after the l6th centurj changed everything, 
and there can be no more consistent art like that which delightg you 
so justly. But the peaaant instincts are as old as-joo b.c^ through it 
all-and I have seen a half naked beggar's brat in Rome throw a 
vine branch round bis head, like a Greek Bacchus. 

And you do more beautiful things yourself in their way, than ever 
were done before.-but I should like you to be more amongst 'the 
cehur of the colours.' 

No, I'm not feeling stronger, but I'm strong enough for all I've 

On a Letter to Riukin. 


1 887-1 890 


The most important publications of the year 
1887 were The ^een of the Pirate Isle (Chatto), 
already mentioned ; the Almanack^ oblong instead 
of upright as were all the others, of which over 
27,000 copies were sold ; and ^een Victories 
jubilee Garland^ made up of illustrations col- 
lected from earlier books. 

From this year forward Ruskin made it a 
practice to preserve at any rate the majority of 
Miss Greenaway's letters.* On his side, how- 
ever, the correspondence was soon destined to 
cease, and so in place of the interchange of 

^ It was Mr. Rutkin't practice to destroy everything not of 
special interest to him or what was unlikely to be of use. On 
one occasion the present writer sent him by request certain early 
proofs of etched plates, the coppers of which were in the Pro- 
fessor's possession. After a time, on being requested to return 
them, he replied that he had destroyed them — * How else do you 
think I could do my work if I litter my house with such ? * — 

and offered by way of compensation to have as many proofs pulled as his disconsolate 

correspondent might desire. 


On a Letter to 

Kate Greenaway 

thought, which would have afforded stimulating reading, wc have 
to content ourselves with what was in the end to be carried on as 
a monologue. 

The earb'est of these letters do not lend themselves to extended 
quotation. It is only later, when Kate made it part of her day's 
work to take her share in relieving the tedium of the aged Professor's 
unoccupied days, that they assume any real importance to the 

The key-note of these epistles is their artkssness. She has 
a child's hesut at forty and ' lives with her girlhood as with a little 
sister.' As we read them the words ' How maTf' are for evier on our 
lips. From time to time we come upon a luminous point and 
a touch of bright humour, but for the most part the letters are 
lacking in grip and verve. Languid too, they often are, the con- 
sequence doubtless of the oMiscientiousness with which she ^>ent 
her^lf in her work, especially when her health during the last ten 
years of her life was bi from robust. And yet with all their 
shortcomings they have a very real interest and are redolent of 
her strong personality. 

They are instinct, too, with the scent of flowers, the love of 
trees, the fascinations of her garden, of sunsets and beauties of 
earth and sky ; full, too, of her dog Rover, whom her friends the 
AUhusens twit her with calling ' Wovcr ' — indeed hardly a letter 
goes without a chapter, or at least a verse, of Rover's biography, from 
which a book entitled The Diary of a Dog might easily be compiled. 
They are fuU of what she is reading (as we might expect, ^e is 
always inveighing against the unhappy endings of books) — and tell 
in detail what she is working at \ full of pictures she has seen 
which wanted ^a Ruskin for their proper criticism'; full of 
her favourite model 'Mary' — 'we always have a merry time, I 
think we are both made to laugh a good deal ' ; fuU of her love 
of nature — ' the garden is full of pictures but I can't get time to 
do them ' \ and again, ' when the sun shines I can smell the grass 
growing' ; full of the seasons — ^ they have got mixed up this year ; 
poor spring has got badly treated or else had an aspiring mind and 
tried to take too much of the year for her own property — anyhow 
here is winter again ' ; full of her friends, the Locker-Lampsons, 
the du Mauriers, Lady Jeune, ' one of the kindest people in all 
the world,' and her daughter, now Mrs. AUhusen, the Tennysons, 
and the beautiful Mrs. Stuart Samuel, ' spring personified dressed 
in blue and violet — a real Beauty she is and very nice ' ; full of 


's Kate GranavM^^i ^ithjst tvupank 

Kate Greenaway as Correspondent 

playful allusions to the pedantic conversations of Miss Edgeworth's 
Harry and Lucy^ which she and Ruslcin had read and laughed 
ova together. And they are full of the summer and winter 
exhibitions — 'no one now says a ^ood word for the Academy 
though they all want to be made R.A.'s ' ; full of the pictures 
she intends to paint — ' I have often wished lately to paint a picture 
of Night— it looks so beautiful out of my window — the yellow 
lights in the windows — the stars in the sky. I think I shall do 
alittlc angel rushing along in it, I want to do it as a background 
to something. If I could but do a della Robbia angel — with that 
look^ — ^those curls ' ; and again, ' Don't you love a market, a real 
country one, where the stalk are so pretty with pears and plums 
and little sage cheeses and long rolls of butter ? For years I 
have been going to paint such a market stall. One day — I 
suppose — one day I shall.* And yet again they describe lovely 
gardens which sne has visited ; full of old houses to which she 
has made pilgrimages. 

One day there is a touch of sensitiveness : — ' I am often 
amused at the women who sell the violets — they so often smell 
them before presenting them to the purchaser 
—this is not always an attraction.' Another I 
day she touches off a portrait ; — 'My sister's 
little girl is good to contemplate. Her profile 
is like a cheerful Burne-Jones.' 

Now she airs a prejudice: — *I wish 
there were no worms in the garden. I am 
so frightened when I sow things to see them 
turn up. I know they are useful but they 
are not nice-looking. I do not dislike many 
things, but a worm I have a repulsion for.' 

And now she pays one of her rare visits 
to the theatre — a great event in her quiet | 
life : — ' I went to see Rebellious Susan — not a 
deep play — very interesting — very cleverly 
acted. But I like going deeper into _ ~— 
things, I think I like deeper motives ibr 
things than what Society thinks.' Then 
she tells of the trouble she takes over her 
pictures : — ' I am doing Cinderella carry- 
ing in the Pumpkin to her &iry godmother — you don't see the 
godmother. I have put a row of scarlet beans as a background. 
1 6s 

Kate Greenaway 

I am going to grow a row in the garden on purpose.' And now 
she wants what she can't have : — * I wish you a very happy 
Birthday. I wish I was going to be there to see all the lovely 
flowers you are going to have. If I were there you should ask 
me to tea — I think — yes, I think you ought to aslc me to tea — 
and we'd have raspberry jam for tea — z muflin, some violets — and 
a Turner to look at — oh yes, I think you should ask me to tea.' 

That is the kind of letter she writes — dwelling but a moment 
on this or that point, irresponsible, sportive, sometimes gay, less 
often grave, delightful to the receiver but rarely with sufficient 
* body ' for the unsympathetic coldness of printer's ink. 

The drawings which embellished them are charming in their 
spontaneity, and who can wonder at the half-heartedness of 
Ruskin's protest when he writes : — 

— In trying to prevent you wasting your time on me I have never 
told you how much I do enjoy these little drawings. They are an 
immense addition to the best pleasures of my life' and give me 
continual interest and new thought. 

Little marvel that such a protest prompted her to become 
even more lavish than before. What a delight these letters were 
to him when ill-health made any written response impracticable 
may be gathered from Mrs. Severn's reiterated announcements : — 

*The Professor is absorbed with delight in your letter.' — 
^ Your letters are always so interesting and a real pleasure to him,* 
— * How grateful I ever am for your untiring goodness to him. 
Your letters really are one of the great pleasures of his life.' — 
' Your lovely letter with the sweet little people looking from the 
ridge of the hill at the rising sun so delighted Di Pa.^ He looked 
at it long and lovingly and kept repeating ^^ Beautiful ! beautiful ! 
beautiful ! " ' And when he was ill in 1897 : — ' Your letters (the 
only ones he at present has) he much enjoys.' 

These letters were full of passing allusions to her friends, 
of whom she now had many amongst persons distinguished in art 
and society. She was slow at forming intimacies but she was 
tenacious of them when made. As she wrote to her friend of 
many years' standing, the Hon. Mrs. Sutton Nelthorpe, in 1896 : 

I'm sorry now that I can see you so seldom. — That's me, so slow at 
getting to want a person and then wanting them so much. 

^ Di Pa wa« the pet name Ruskin bore at that time in hit immediate family circle. 


Frmi a ivater -colour drawing in the posutacn of Harry y. f^eitch. Esq, 

Her Friends 

To mention only a few of her friends, there were Mrs. Miller, 
Miss Violet Dickinson, the Stuart Samuels, Lady Dorothy Nevill, 
Lady Jeune, Lady Victoria Herbert, Rev. W. J. Loftie, Stacy 
Marks, the du Mauriers, Mrs. Allhusen, Mrs. Richmond Ritchie, 
the Edmund Evans', Mr. Norman Shaw, Mr. Austin Dobson, 
the Locker-Lampsons, Lady Mayo, the Hon. Gerald and Lady 
Maria Ponsonby, the Hon. Mrs. Sutton Nelthorpe, Mrs. Ailing- 
ham, the Duchess of St. Albans, Lady Ashburton, the Tennysons, 
Mrs. Arthur Severn, her daughters, the Misses Lily and v iolet 
Severn, and her husband, Mr. Arthur Severn, R.L, Miss Vyv)ran, 
and Miss Fripp. Miss Vyvyan, like Mrs. Basil Martineau and 
Mrs. Ridley Corbet (wife or the distinguished painter, the late 
M. Ridley Corbet, A.R.A.), was a fellow- student of Kate's; 
Miss Fripp was niece of the well-known member of the Royal 
Water-Colour Society. With Mrs. Garrett Anderson, M.D., 
for some years from 1887 her medical adviser, she was very 
friendly. With Mr. Anderson, too; and also with Miss Mary 
Anderson, Kate was on the most intimate terms during her life 
at Hampstead. 

In March of this year Ruskin set himself the task of teaching 
her perspective in about a dozen consecutive letters. He had 
often alluded to the matter, but now he fills his letters with 
diagrams of cubes and gables and arches, sparing no pains to 
make things plain to her and setting her tasks which she most 
faithfully performed. The technical parts of these letters would 
here be out of place but some of the side issues suggested by 
them will bear quotation. 

To tell the truth, the perspective in her drawings is often 
very deficient, and the calm violation of its laws in some of her 
earlier work was due, not to quaintness as people thought, but 
to real inability to master it. She would innocently make inde- 
pendent sketches of pretty cottages, real or imagined, and then 
calmly group them together, with little or no correction or bring- 
ing into harmony, as a background for a composition of playing 
children. In her earlier years her father would often put these 
portions of her design into proper perspective, and later on her 
brother John. Indeed, at her first exhibition a critic was examin- 
ing a drawing from Under the Window^ and as he looked it over, 
he exclaimed to a friend, first in amazement and then in anger, 
* She has one point of sight here, and another here ! and here ! 
and here ! ! Why, she has five distinct points of sight ! ' 


Kate Greenaway 

Afterwards her brother would reduce the whole to correctness 
for her to re-draw. So when Ruskin began to educate her 
in a branch of art which, by the way^ is neglected and loathed 
by not a few of the greatest of the world's painters, she explained 
to him how she was in this respect in the excellent care of her 
brother. Mr. John Greenaway, by the way, always believed that 
his sister's curious inaccuracy was due to her short-sightedness ; 
as she would approach too closely to the objects she drew, and so 
' got them out.' 

Thereupon, on March 8, Ruskin writes : ^ I like Johnnie's 
sticking himself up to teach you perspective ! I never believed 
you'd learn it, or I'd have taught it you here, and been done with 
it. Anyhow-don't you let him teaze you any more and just 
mind this to begin with.' Here follow diagrams and explanation, 
and he goes on ' That's enough for to-day. Three more scribbles 
will teach you all you'll ever need to know.' 

Two days later he returns to the subject : — * There's no fear of 
your forgetting perspective, any more than forgetting how to' 
dance. One can't help it when one knows. The next rule you 
have to learn is more than half way. One never uses the rules, 
one only feels them-and defies if one likes-like John Bellini. 
But we should first know and enjoy them.' 

The last words refer to the following passage which he had 
written the day before, when sending her a copy he had had 
made for her of Bellini's picture : — 

* The Globe picture is one of a series done by John Bellini of 
the Gods and Goddesses of good and evil to man.^ She is the 
sacred Venus- Venus always rises out of the sea, but this one 
out of laughing sea of unknown depth. She holds the world in 
her arms, changed into heaven.' 

On March 12 he says, apropos of her work on the Pied Piper^ 
^ Finished the rats, have you ! but you ought to do dozens of rats 
in perspective with radiating tails.' Here he draws a rough 
example of what he means and continues : — ' I believe the perfec- 
tion of perspective is only recent. It was first applied to Italian 
Art by Paul Uccello (Paul the Bird-because he drew birds so 
well and many). He went off his head with his love of perfection- 
and Leonardo and Raphael spoiled a lot of pictures with it, to 
show they knew it. Now the next thing you have to be clear 

^ *■ Venus, MistrcM of the World *— one of the series of allegorical subjects by 
Giovanni Bellini in the Academy of Fine Arts in Venice. 


Perspective and Bellini 

of in perspective is that-the Heavenly Venus is out of it. You 
couldn't see her and the high horizon at once. But as she sees 
all round the world there are no laws of perspective for her/ 

Not unnaturally, perhaps, Miss Greenaway claims for herself 
the same licence or privilege of abstention as Bellini was allowed, 
so on March 1 7th Ruskin replies: — ^I didn't answer your question 
** Why may not I defy Perspective as well as Jonn Bellini ? '* 
Not because you are less — but because defying is a quite different 
thing from running against. Perspective won't put up with you- 
if you tread on her toes~but will concede half her power to you 
if you can look her in the eyes. I won't tell you more till you're 
across that river.' 

Two other extracts from Ruskin's letters, and the record of 
this year is complete. 

Ruskin to Kate Greenaway 

Mmdcpf 23 \Jan. 1887]. 

Pm Still quite well thank God, and as prudent as can be-and have 
been enjoying my own drawings ! and think I shan't mind much it 
there's a fault or two in your's ! 

But we will have it out about suns and moons like straw hats ! 
and shoes like butter boats-and lilies crumpled like pocket-handker- 
chiefs, and frocks chopped up instead of folded. I've got a whole 
cupboard full of dolls for lay figures and five hundred plates of costume- 
to be Kate Greenawayed. 

Ruskin to Kate Greenaway 

Brantwooo \Apr't\ 4, 1887]. 

The anemones are here-and quite lovely, but you know they're 
not like those wild ones of Italy and wither ever so much sooner. 

I'm enjoying my botany again-but on the whole I think it's very 
absurd of flowers not to be prettier ! How they might all grow up 
into lovely trees-and pinks grow like almond blossom, and violets 
everywhere like daisies, tulips climb about like Virginian creeper-and 
not stand staring just as if they'd been just stuck into the ground. — 
Fancy a house all in a mantle of tulips. — And how many new shapes 

they might invent ! And why aren't there Water 

Roses as well as Water Lilies r 

169 22 

Kate Greenaway 

lii the early part of the year Kate Greenaway seems to have 
designed a cover for The Peace of Polissena^ by Miss Francesca 
Alexander, a * Part ' of Christ* s Folk in the Apennine^ edited and 
partly written by Ruskin — ^a graceful reply to her supposed but of 
course entirely imaginary jealousy of that lady's work — but it does 
not appear to have been used. This may have been a result of the 
return of the Master's illness which again laid him low in the 
spring of 1887. 

In January of 1888 we find him sufficiently recovered to 
write the following pathetic letters from Sandgate, whither he had 
gone to recuperate. 

In other letters of this period he complains that he has hardly 
strength to answer hers, and that he is sadly oppressed by the 
cold which oppresses her. He praises her for her appreciation of 
Donatelio, and says that Donatello would have appreciated Kate 
Greenaway. But he qualifies his praise by telling her that she 
would do far more beautiful things if she would not allow herself 
to be hurried away by the new thoughts which crowd upon her 
and hinder her from fully realising any. 

Then he falls foul of modern novels, of which he is having a 
surfeit through the circulating library. Some of the books for 
girls he finds passably good but deplores the fashion, which began 
with Misunderstood^ of breaking children's backs, so that one 
never knows what is going to happen to them when they go out 
walking ! 

Ruskin to Kate Greenaway 

[Sandgatx] 27 yan. 88. 

You cannot conceive how in my present state, I envy-that is to say 
only in the strongest way, long for-the least vestige of imagination, 
such as yours. When nothing shows itself to me-all day long-but the 
dull room or the wild sea and I think what it must be to you to have 
far sight into dreamlands of truth-and to be able to see such scenes of 
the most exquisite grace and life and quaint vivacity-whether you draw 
them or not, what a blessing to have them there-at your call. And 
then I stopped and have been lying back in my chair the last quarter 
of an hour,-thinking-If I could only let you feel for only a quarter of 
an hour what it is to have no imagination-no power of calling up lovely 
things-no guidance of pencil point along the visionary line-Oh how 
thankful you would be to find your mind again. 

And what lovely work you have spent-where no one will ever sec 



From a ivafet -colour drawing made by Kate Greentewitf fur yohn Ruskln upon its 
birthday. In the possession of Stuart M, Samuel, Esq., M.P. 

^ Processions ' 

it but poor me-on the lightest of your messages. Do you remember 
the invitation sent by the girl holding the muffin high on her toasting 
fork ? You never did a more careful or perfect profile. And the 
clusters of beauty in those festival or farewell ones ? 

Well, I had joy out of them-such as you meant-and more than 
ever I could tell you, nor do I ever cease to rejoice at and wonder at 
them,-but with such sorrow that they are not all in a great lovely 
book, for all the world's New Years and Easter days. 

You might do a book of Festas, one of these days-with such pro- 
cessions ! 

By ^ processions ' are meant the long drawings with a bevy of 
following maids, and sometimes of boys too, of which one or two 
examples are included in this book. They contain some of Miss 
Greenaway's most careful and dainty work in drawing, colour, 
and composition, but, unfortunately, are so large that they have 
suffered great reduction. 

RusKiN TO Kate Grbbnaway 

[Sandgate] 17 Feb, 88. 

It*s just as bad here as everywhere else-there are no birds but sea- 
gulls and sparrows— there is snow every where-and north-east wind on 
the hills,-but none on the sea-which is as dull as the Regent's Canal. 
But I was very glad of the flower letter yestcrday,-and the chicken- 
broth one to-day, only I can't remember that cat whom I had to teach 
to like cream. I believe it is an acquired taste-and that most cats can 
conceive nothing better than milk. I am puzzled by Jim's inattention 
to drops left on the tablecloth-he cleans his saucer scrupulously, but 
I've never seen him lap up, or touch up, a spilt drop. He is an ex- 
tremely graceful grey striped fat cushion 'of a cat, -with extremely 
winning ways of lying on his back on my knee, with his head anywhere 
and his paws everywhere. 

But he hasn't much conversation and our best times are I believe 
when we both fall asleep. 

He says he yearns for ^ Pipers,' alluding, of course, to drawings 
for * The Pied Piper of Hamelin^ by Robert Browning, with 
35 Illustrations by Kate Greenaway. Engraved and printed in 
colours by Edmund Evans,' which George Routledge & Sons were 
just publishing. The book, which was charming throughout, 
save for a poor drawing on page 31 and a curious solecism on 
page 39, met with immediate and gratifying success. Stacy 


Kate Greenaway 

Marks wrote : — * You have far exceeded my expectations in carry- 
ing through what must have been a strange and difficult task.' 
Ruskin spoke of it as the grandest thing she had ever done. 
An American admirer wrote enthusiastically : — * You have more 
followers in the States than ever the Pied riper of Hamelin had.' 
She sold the original drawings for a large sum to Messrs. Palmer 
& Howe of Manchester. 

On Feb. 23 Ruskin writes : — 

The Piper came by the 1 1 post— ten minutes after my note left this 
morning. I only expected outline proofs, so you may judge how pleased 
I was. 

It is all as good and nice as it can be, and you really have got 
through your rats with credit~and the Piper is sublime-and the children 
lovely. But I am more disappointed in the ' Paradise ' than I expected 
to be-a real view of Hampstead ponds in spring would have been more 
celestial to me than this customary fiat of yours with the trees stuck 
into it at regular distances — And not a Peacock !-nor a flying horse ! ! 

The only other publications of the year were the sixth 
Almanack^ of which 20,000 out of 37,500 copies went to 
America and 6,500 to France, and a contribution to The American 
^een. There were also private commissions executed for Lady 
Dorothy Ncvill, Lady Northcote, and Mr. Ponsonby. 

But the crowning event of 1888 was the friendship which she 
now formed with Mrs. AUingham. Sixteen years before they had 
worked side by side as students, but since then their paths had 
diverged. The account of their intimacy will best be told in that 
delightful artist's own words : — 

It must have been in 1872 or 1873 that I first met Kate Greenaway 
at an evening class at the Slade School (which I only attended for 
three months). I had given up my student work at the R.A. schools — 
(she doubtless had then left Kensington) for drawing on the wood in 
my own studio. 

1 was not formally introduced to her till several years after I was 
married, when I met her at an evening party at Tennyson's — in 
Belgrave Square, I think. Mr. Frederick Locker presented me to her, 
and we had a pleasant talk, I remember. In 1881, we went to live at 
Witley in Surrey, and among our kindest neighbours were Mr. and 
Mrs. Edmund Evans, with whom Kate often came to stay. 

For several years we (K. and I) had merely pleasant friendly meet- 
ings without in any way becoming intimate. I think it was in the 



From a large water-colour drawing in the possesion of Harry J. yeitch, Esq. 

Mrs. Allingham's Recollections 

spring of 1888 that we went out painting together in the copses near 
Witley and became really friends. In the autumn of that year we 
removed to Hampstead, and it was always a pleasure to visit Kate in 
her beautiful home and to sit and chat with her by the hour in her 
cosy little tea-room or in the great studio full of interesting things. 
When the time came for saying good-night, she would always come 
down to the hall-door and generally put on a hat hanging in the hall 
and come as far as the gate for more friendly last words. 

One day in the autumn of 1889 we went to Pinner together on an 
exploring expedition for subjects, and were delighted with some of the 
old cottages we saw there. I had been pressing her ever since our 
spring time together at Witley to share with me some of the joys of 
painting out of doors. Another day we went farther afield — to 
Chesham and Amersham. She was delighted with the beauty of the 
country and the picturesque old towns — especially with the * backs * at 
Amersham and the river with its border of willows and little cottage 
gardens and back yards. As evening drew on and black clouds warned 
us that a storm was imminent, we hailed a baker's cart that was going 
towards our station and we agreed that it gave us a capital view of the 
country over the high hedges. 

In the spring of 1890 I took my children to Freshwater, Isle of 
Wight, and found rooms near us for Kate. She and I went out paint- 
ing together daily, either to some of the pretty old thatched cottages 
around Farringford or to the old dairy in the grounds, when we often 
had a friendly visit from the great poet himself, or from Mr. Hallam 
Tennyson, with an invitation to come up to tea. 

During the summer of that year (1890) we continued our outdoor 
work together, generally taking an early train from Finchley Road to 
Pinner, for the day. She was always scrupulously thoughtful for the 
convenience and feelings of the owners of the farm or cottage we wished 
to paint, with the consequence that we were made welcome to sit in 
the garden or orchard where others were refused admittance. 

I am afraid that her short sight must have greatly added to the 
difficulty of out-door painting for her. I remember her exclaiming 
one day at Pinner, * What am I to do ? When I look at the roof it 
is all a red blur — when I put on my spectacles I see every crack in 
the tiles.' 

Though we often sat side by side, painting the same object 
(generally silently — for she was a very earnest, hard worker — and 
perhaps I was, too), it seemed to me that there was little likeness 
between our drawings — especially after the completion in the studio. 
But she was one of the most sensitive of creatures and I think she felt 
that it might be wiser for both of us to discontinue the practice of 
working from the same subjects, so, after that summer of 1890, we did 


Kate Greenaway 

not go out painting any more together. Whether days or months 
passed between our meetings, I was always sure of the same hearty 
greeting from her. 

The last time I saw her was Feb. 28, 1901, at the Fine Art 
Society. I thought she looked fairly well, and seemed so, though she 
spoke of having felt tired sometimes. But she said nothing of the 
serious illness of the year before. It was not possible to have much 
talk then. I became exceedingly busy just after that time, and in 
May went abroad — and when later on in the year I called at her house, 
I was told she was not well enough to see friends. 

Her work remains for all to see and enjoy. Of herself, I can truly 
say that she was one of the most honest, straightforward, and kindly of 
women : a sympathetic, true, and steadfast friend. 

The year 1889 produced, besides the Almanack^ which by now 
had become an institution, Kate Greenawafs Book of Games — with, 
as a matter of course, Mr. Evans as engraver and printer, and G. 
Routledge & Sons as publishers — and ' ihe Royal Progress of King 
PepitOy written by Beatrice F. Cresswell, illustrated by Kate 
Greenaway,' and published by the Society for Promoting Christian 
Knowledge. Of each of these books nearly ten thousand copies 
were issued. The Book of Games^ in which she could choose her 
own subjects and follow her own bent, found K. G., if not at her 
best, at least happy and unrestrained, while with King Pepito it 
was otherwise. As was usually the case with her, she found it 
hard to assimilate another's ideas. The inelasticity of story-book 
illustrating seemed to paralyse her pencil and she became mannered 
and conventional. 

This year she was elected a member of the Royal Institute 
of Painters in Water-Colours, and was moreover represented by 
thirteen frames of drawings in the British Section of the Inter- 
national Exhibition at Paris.^ These were greatly admired, and 
elicited the following, amongst innumerable other tributes of 
praise : — 

Son genre a etc une innovation et une preuve de bravourc, comme 
tous les actes d'independance dans Tordre moral et artistique. 

Lancer au milieu d'une soci^t^ blasce, ces cchappds de nurseries, 
vdtus i la mode bizarre et charmante qu'on appelle maintenant Ma 
Greenaway,* ctait A coup sAr original 

^ These comprised designs from the Almanack for 1884, and drawings from Mar'h 
gold Garden, the Language of Flower Sy and Little Ann, 


r .> B. Eliln Moimig. E-f. 

Ruskin's Last Letters 

Les csuyres de raquarelliste anglaise jetcent-elles \i une note fraiche 
et gaie, et font-elles Feffet d'un enfant dans un int^rieur de vieux, 
d'un oiseau ^gare dans un cloltre 

L'usateur des Almanachs semble avoir une preference marqude pour 
certaines couleurs : elle excelle dans I'usage du blanc, du rose, et du vert. 
Avec leur emploi, elle arrive i des teintes effac^es d'un effet charmant. 
Ses tons ^voquent Timage des pendules d fieurs et des soies anciennes, 
des vieilles faiences d paysages et des c<^ladonnades i la Watteau, toutes 
ces choses, comme elles nous arrivent maintenant, mangdes de soleil, 
vieilles d'un si^cle et pourtant encore delicieusement jolies, ainsi que 
les aquarelles qui en rdveillent le souvenir. 

Since the spring of 1888 there had been no letters from Ruskin, 
who had made his last foreign tour to France, Switzerland, and 
Italy in the vain hope of renewing his health. Now in the spring 
of 1889 he was back at Brantwood with ten pathetic years before 
him of growing infirmity. In May he was well enough to write 
to Miss Greenaway the following letters, which were to be the 
last he was ever to send. In the course of the following month 
he produced a chapter of Praterita and then his literary career 
was closed. 


Brantwood May-day 1889. 

IVe been a-maying with you all day,-coming upon one beautiful 
thing after another in my drawer, so long unopened-most thankfully 
to-day unlocked again-and sending balm and rose and lily sweetness 
all through the old study. What exquisite drawings those were you 
did just before I fell so ill,-the children passing under the flower arch- 
ie. ! and Joan tells me you are doing such lovely things now with 
such backgrounds,-grander than ever, and of course the Piper is the 
best book you ever did-the Piper himself unsurpassable-and I feel as 
if he had piped me back out of the hill again, and would give some 
spring times yet to rejoice in your lovely work and its witness to them. 

I do hope much, now-the change is greater and deeper for good 
than it has ever been before, but I have to watch almost every breath 
lest I should fall back again. 

I wonder if you would care to come down in the wild rose time— 
and draw a branch or two, with the blue hills seen through them, and 
perhaps study a little falling water-or running-in the green shadows. 
I wouldn't set you to horrid work in the study, you should even draw 
any quantity of those things that you liked-in the forenoon-and have 

Kate Greenaway 

tea in the study, and perhaps we could go on with the Swiss fish story ! 
and I've some psalter work in hand that I want you to help me in- 
tebbily,-and poor Joanie will be so thankful to have somebody to look 
after me a little, as well as her :-and so-perhaps you'll come, won't 
you ? 

Bkantwood, 3 Aftff, 1889. 

I am so very thankful that you can come-and still care to come-f 
I was so afraid you might have some work on hand that would hinder 
you-but now, I do trust that you will be quite happy, for indeed you 
will find here, when you are at liberty to do what you like best,-the 
exact things that become most tractable in their infinite beauty. You 
are doing great work already-some of the pages of the Piper are 
magnificent pictures, though with a white background-you will be led 
by the blue mountains and in the green glens to a deeper colour- 
melody-and-to how much else-there is no calculating. Please bring 
the primrose picture !-it will be the intensest delight to me and in 
looking over your drawings again, (how many do you think there are 
in my Kate drawer, now-besides those in the cabinets ?) I feel more 
than ever-I might almost say twice as much as I used to, their 
altogether unrivalled loveliness. 

And I think, as soon as you have seen all the exhibitions, and 
feel able to pack your country dresses and sacrifice London gaieties 
for monastic peace in art and nature, that you should really come ; 
the roses will soon be here-and the gentians and hyacinths will 
certainly be here before you-aiid it is best, while all things bid fair 
for us, to take Fortune at her word. 

I trust that my health will go on improving-but I might take cold, 
or Joanie might-or the children. At present we're all right and I 
want you to come as soon as may be. 

Brantwood SuKdojf 12 Af^cfjf, 1889. 

I am so sorry you can't come sooner, to see the gentians-but I suppose 
they contrive ways of growing them now even in London. But I have 
a cluster of nine,-in a little glass in the study bow window-you know 
where that is ? ! — three little roses pretending to be peach blossoms 
in another little glass on my table, and beside them a cluster of 
'myrtilla cara -if you don't know what that is, it's just jealousy and I'll 
make you paint some-whcre your easel shan't tumble, nor your colours 
be overflown-I don't a bit know what's the right word-Shakespcare'» 
no authority, is he nowadays ?-and next the Myrtilla Cara who is 
in her sweetest pride and humility of fruit-like blossom, there's a 
cluster of the most beautiful pyrus I ever saw-it is almost white, I 


Ruskin's Last Letter 

suppose with the cold and rain, where it blooms on the outside wall, 
but on my table-brought in by Joanie, it has become glowing red-not 
in the least like a rose-but yet not in the least vulgar-like a lady 
wearing a scarlet cloak-and with its own grand laurel-like leaves. 

Well, if you can't come yet you can't-but you must read a little 
bit of me every day-to keep you steady against the horrible mob of 
animals calling themselves painters, nowadays (-1 could paint better 
than they by merely throwing my ink bottle at them-if I thought them 
toortA the ink). But take my Ariadne Florentina-and read for to-morrow 
the 1 1 2th paragraph, p. 94-and in the appendix, the 244th page down 
to * steam whistle.' — Post's going-and I must not begin any special 
appendix to Katie-except that she must not plague herself with en- 
deavours to realise the impossible — Her first, and easy duty is to catch 
the beautiful expressions of real children. 

BsANTWOOD, 14 May, 1889. 

I am so very happy you are teaching yourself French. It is the 
greatest addition you can give to the happiness of your life,-some day 
I hope-old as I am-to see you drawing French children-and listening 
to them ! 

And you must learn a little Latin too ! only to enjoy the nomen- 
clature of Proserpina. Please take it down and read pages 227, 228, 
about Myrtilla cara-and just look at my type of all perfection, the 
Angel Raphael's left hand in the great Perugino,-it will refresh you and 
contrast, ever more brightly and richly, with modern mud and pewter. — 

But- the idea of asking why a hand is so difficult ! Why 

it's ever so much harder than even a foot-and for an arm^nohody 
ever could paint a giri's arm yet-from elbow to wrist. — It's not quite 
fair to show you these two tries of yours-but yet, the moral of them 
is that you must cure yourself of thinking so much of hair and hats 
and parasols-and attend ^r//, (for some time to come) to toes-iingers- 
and wrists. 

Thus ended, so hr as Ruskin was concerned, a correspondence 
which had not only been one of the greatest pleasures of Kate 
Greenaway's life, but had been above all a healthy stimulus and 
a liberal education. 

The following year, 1890, which saw lio publication calling 
for notice other than the Almanack^ was clouded by the death of 
her father, Mr. Greenaway, on August 26th. He was one of 
those honourable, hard-workine, competent servants of the public 
who, content to do their work quietly, look for no fame and no 
reward beyond the right to live and earn an honest livelihood for 

177 23 

Kate Greenaway 

themselves and their dependants. Mr. Mason Jackson of the 
Illustrated London News paid him a fitting tribute when he 
wrote : — 

I have known Mr. Greenaway so long and admired his sterling 
qualities so much that I feel I have lost another of my valued friends. 
His family will have the satisfaction of feeling that he has left behind 
him an unblemished character and a respected name. 

Ever ready to help in charitable undertakings, although 
almost driven to her wits' end to get through work which had 
to be done, Kate this year designed a cover for the album of the 
Bazaar held in aid of the ^ New Hospital for Women ' ; such 
contributions she felt due to a public from whom she had received 
so handsome a recognition. Very diiFerent, however, were the 
feelings she expressed towards the methods of certain journals of 
getting something for nothing, and over these she would wax 
exceedingly indignant. There were those who solicited her for 
an (unremunerated) opinion ' as a representative woman on the 
servant question,' or for a few lines on ^ why I like painting for 
children,' or for ' the briefest message to our readers in a series of 
timely words or messages from men and women distinguished in 
politics, literature, and art ' ; or for a ^ gratuitous product of your 
skill — which would give you a magnificent advertisement and 
result materially to your renown and prosperity ' ! 

To signalise her election she contributed to the Royal Institute 
of Painters in Water-Colours four exhibits — ' A Portrait of a Little 
Boy,' ' An Angel visited the Green Earth,' ' Boy with Basket of 
Apples,' and ^ Head of a Boy ' ; and she exhibited also a portrait 
of a little lad at the Royal Academy. 



a ^ 
- X 









For the last year or two Kate Greenaway had 
shown unmistakable signs of failing energy, and 
in 1 89 1 her friend Mr. Anderson of the Orient 
Line sought to persuade her to take a sea-voyage 
on the Steam-ship Garonne \ it must not be sup- 
posed, however, that she was yet showing the first 
symptoms of the illness which was to terminate 
ten years later in her death. She published no 
work this year except the Almanack and, though 
scarcely worthy of repeated mention, the title- 
page designed for The Orient Guide^ as a graceful 
acknowledgment of Mr. Anderson's 
*~ •. kindly friendship. At the Royal Academy 
she was represented by a ' Girl's Head,' 
and at the Royal Institute by ' An Old 
Farm House * and * A Cottage in Surrey.' 
But the year was far from being un- 
eventful, for now for the first time she 
determined to hold a ^one-man' exhibi- 
tion of her water-colour drawings at 
the Gallery of the Fine Art Society, at 148, New Bond Street. 


On a Letter to Ruskin« 

Kate Greenaway 

The exhibition was highly successful. The town flocked to 
see the originals of the designs which had charmed it for so 
many years in the reproductions, and greatly was the world 
surprised at the infinite tenderness, delicacy, and grace of her 
execution, and the wealth of her invention. Sir Frederick 
Leighton purchased two of her pictures and others followed suit to 
the amount of more than ^1,350. (The net sum which came to 
her was /964.) For the first time the general public and the 
critics had the opportunity of assigning to Kate Greenaway her 
rightful place amongst contemporary artists. She had appeared in 
most of the important exhibitions m London and the provinces, 
and her pictures had almost invariably found purchasers, but these 
occasional exhibits had been comparatively few. Now her work 
could be gauged in bulk and there was a chorus of approval. Not 
that too much stress must be laid upon that. Even now, some 
years after her death, there is some contention as to exactly where 
she stands. As Mr. Lionel Robinson asked at the time — did she 
found a school or did she only start a &shion ? was hers but a 
passing ad captandum popularity or does her art contain the true 
elements of immortality ? 

The following letters of this year exhibit her perennial love 
of spring flowers, with which Lady Mayo now constantly supplied 
her, in return for which on this occasion she sent a drawing of St. 
John's wort, bluebell, and apple-blossom ; and we recognise once 
more her festidious terror lest she should receive payment for what 
was not precisely to the taste of her clients. 

Kate Greenaway to Lady Mayo 

Dear Lady Mayo— Your lovely flowers have just come. It is too 
good of you to have such kind thought and remembrance of me. I 
thank you very much. I think nothing gives me such joy and delight 
as spring flowers, and after this long, long winter how delightful it is to 
have them back again. The springs always come late to us here ; it 
is such a cold place. I am just now going into Surrey to paint 

I feel I must send you a flower also. I wish it could be as lovely 
as yours ! — With kind regards and again thanks, yours very sincerely, 

Kate Greenaway. 

The following letter probably refers to the first of a set of tiny 
water-colour portraits of children executed for Mr. Ponsonby 



In pencil and toater-coiour — an experimental drawtng. In the possession of the 

Hon, Gerald Ponsoniy. 

The Hon. Gerald Ponsonby 

which show what she might have accomplished if she had set her- 
self seriously to the painting of miniatures : — 

Kate Greenaway to Mr. Ponsonby 

50, Feognal, Hampstxad, N.W., 
5M Octcher 1891. 

Dear Mr. Ponsonby — I am long in sending you the drawing, and 
now I do send it, I am afraid you will feel it very unsatisfactory ; I feel 
it so myself — ^it is so much more difficult to me — doing a Portrait than 
a purely fancy drawing. Now I can't make up my mind if it requires 
more darks or not. If you feel that let me have it back and I will put 
them in. I am rather afraid to do more. I have puzzled over it until 
I don't know what it wants really. But one thing is certain, you 
must not have it if you do not care for it. I should be so sorry if you 
did, — it would really pain me and you know it would not matter in 
the least. I should be the gainer — having had such a pleasant time 
with you and a pretty little girl to draw — so please be very sure you 
don't keep it if it is not what you wish. 

The African marigolds are still beautiful — the memories of Christ- 
church and Poole are still vivid — I did so very much like seeing them. 
I believe seeing old towns and villages are my greatest enjoyments, — if 
only I did not make such abject sketches. I saw the salmon-coloured 
house on my way home. — ^With kind regards, yours sincerely, 

Kate Greenaway. 

For the next nine years (i 892-1 900) there were no new publica- 
tions with Kate Greenaway's name on the title-page with the excep- 
tion of the Almanacks. These were published in 1892, 3, 4, and 5 
by George Routledge & Sons as heretofore. In 1896 there was 
none : perhaps, as we have said, because that for 1895 had been 
* made up * — much against K. G.'s will — from old and compara- 
tively unsuccessful work ; still, as we see later, an application was 
made to Miss Greenaway for an almanack, but she was indisposed 
to do it. In 1897 ^^^ last was published by J. M. Dent & Co. 
Of these charming booklets complete sets are now not easy to 
obtain, and readily fetch four or five times their original cost. 

In 1892 there vtras a small exhibition of twenty of her water- 
colours by Messrs. Van Baerle in Glasgow, ana an important 
commission executed for the Dowager Lady Ash burton. 

In 1893 ^^^ ^ ^^ drawings were sold at the Columbian 
Exhibition, Chicago, for forty-five guineas. These were the 


Kate Greenaway 

title-page to Marigold Garden^ 'The Mulberry Bush/ *Girl 
drawing a Chaise,' 'Little Girlie,* and 'Little Phyllis.* The 
Almanack drawings of this year were disposed of through Messrs. 
Palmer, Howe & Co. of Manchester to Mr. David Walker of 
Middleton in the neighbourhood of that city, with special and 
exclusive permission to reproduce them as designs for 'sanitary 
wall-papers.' Kate was delighted with the results and many a 
nursery is now gay with these charming productions.* 

The modern passion for book-plate collecting was at this time 
at its height and Kate came in for her meed of praise at the hands 
of Mr. Egerton Castle in his English Book-plates of this year, 
and at the hands, too, of Miss Noma Labouchere in her Ladies* 
Book-plates J of two years later. In the former are rejyoduced those 
designed by Miss Greenaway for ' Frederick Locker ' and his son 
' Godfrey Locker-Lampson,* and in the latter for 'Dorothy Locker- 
Lampson' and ' Sarah Nickson.' Amongst others for whom she 
designed book-plates may be mentioned Lady Victoria Herbert, 
Miss Vera Samuel (a child's book-pbte), Mrs. J. Black, and Mr. 
Stuart M. Samuel. Most of those mentioned are here reproduced. 

Although the publications of these closing years of her life 
were scanty it must not be supposed that K. G. allowed her 
pencil and brush to be idle. This was far from the case. It is 
true that her work done for reproduction was nearly at an end, 
but she was devoting herself with unabated enthusiasm, so far as 
her health would allow, to the more congenial task of painting 
small easel pictures in water-colour in view of future exhibitions 
at the Fine Art Society's gallery. 

The following letter shows her hard at work for her nex 
public appearance, and the entry of this year, the only entry in her 
long range of laconic diaries of an introspective nature — 'To 
remember to keep resolution firmly and to think how much can 
be made of Art and Life,' — demonstrates the spirit in which she 
was working. 

Kate Greenaway to Mr. Ponsonby 

50, Frognal, Hampstkad, N.W., 
29/i Dec, 1893. 

Dear Mr. Ponsonby — I believe the Exhibition is finally settled at 
LAST— drawings to be sent in on the 1 5th, and Private View to take 

^ Reproduced as end-papen of this volume. 


From a miniature m tht potusmn of the Horn. Gerald Ponmmby, 

^ The Ladies' Home Journal ' 

place on the 20th And it is nice weather to get on in ! 

Black night here the last three days Mr. Huish of course 

changes the date about nine times. First they couldn't, then they 
could. First the small room and then the big one. HE suggested 
Palms to fill up the corners. Think of my poor little works floating 
about in that big room. I wrote a beautiful letter, suggesting that 
a considerable amount of Palms seemed inevitable — but the letter 
was not allowed to be sent, my brother considered it FLIPPANT 
and unbusiness-like. I thought this rather hard, as I had abstained 
from remarking that a few apple trees or roses might be more in accord- 
ance with the sentiment of my drawings than plants of an Oriental 
character. However I am going to have the small room. Shall you 
be still in London ? Nothing will get finished if this fog lasts. 

I was desperately [sorry] not to see the tree — but there was no 
help. I wrote to Lady Maria in so much of a hurry — I hope I 
explained clearly, -and that I am hoping to come to tea when a leisure 
afternoon comes to Lady Maria to have me. 

I wish you and Lady Maria a very happy New Year. — Yours 
sincerely, Kate Greenaway. 

I'm too delighted that the shops are once more open — and that 
the Post comes and goes. 

The exhibition opened on January 22, and the gross proceeds 
were /I5O67 : i6s. (net f'j^q). The most important works 
'The ' " ----- 

were 'The Green Seat' (40 guineas), 'The Stick Fire' (35 
guineas), 'The Cherry Woman (40 guineas), 'The little Go- 
Cart* (36 guineas), 'Cottages' (45 guineas), 'Jack and Jill' (20 
guineas), 'The Fable of the Girl and her Milk Pail ' (40 guineas), 
'Lucy Locket' (30 guineas), 'Standing for her Picture' (25 
guineas), ' Two Little Sisters' (25 guineas), 'The Toy Horse' 
(25 guineas), 'Belinda' (25 guineas), 'Down the Steps' (25 
guineas), 'Apple Trees' (55 guineas), 'Over the Tea' (35 
guineas), 'A Spring Copse' (40 guineas), 'The Old Steps' (35 
guineas), 'Under the Rose Tree' (25 guineas), 'At a Garden 
Door' (35 guineas), and 'A Buttercup Field' (^^30). 

This year she began her connection with The Ladies^ Home 
yournaly published in Philadelphia, which, with its circulation of 
700,000, did much to enlarge her circle of American admirers. 
The connection lasted through four numbers and proved highly 
remunerative. Thirty pounds was paid her per page for the serial 
rights only of seven or eight beautiful little pen-and-ink drawings 
illustrating delightful verses by Miss Laura £. Richards. They 


Kate Greenaway 

were executed in her happiest vein and they not only show no 
falling ofF either in invention or execution but an absolute advance 
in the free use of the pen. The only other published work of this 
year which calls for mention is the coloured drawing ' A Sailor's 
Wife* reproduced in the December number of fhe English 
Illustrated Magaxine, It is ambitious in treatment, but illustrates 
the artist's limitations, although much of its failure is due to the 
crudeness of the colour-printing. 

The fact is that her genius for drawing for the press had now 
grown fitful, and that she felt this herself is proved by her refusal 
at this time to undertake the illustration of Messrs. Longman's 
Reading Books for elementary schools, which a few years earlier 
would have made a very strong appeal to her. Doubtless, too, her 
health had much to do with it and disinclined her to bind herself 
to the dates and exactions which it is incumbent on publishers 
to set. 

After two years' absence from the walls of the Royal Institute 
she was now again represented by the portrait of ^A Girl,' which 
was the forerunner of an unbroken series of exhibits until 1897. 

On February the 2nd, the little circle at Froenal was further 
sadly reduced by the deeply-mourned death of Mrs. Greenaway, 
of whose fine and sterling character the reader has caught glimpses 
in the earlier chapters. The strain of this sorrow coming imme- 
diately after the exhaustion consequent upon the exhibition of her 
pictures, resulted in some months of broken health, and it was not 
until May that Miss Greenaway found herself again fit for work. 

Soon after her mother's death she wrote : — 

Katb Greenaway to Mr. Ponsonby 

50, Frognal, Hampstxad, N.W., 
loM Feb, 1894. 

Dear Mr. Ponsonby — Thank you so much for your kind letter. 
You and Lady Maria have been so kind. I can't tell you how much 
it has been to me to feel I have such friends as you always are to me. 
We certainly do feel desolate and strange, but I know in time the very 
dreadful feeling will pass off, though I also know life must be for 
ever a different feeling, for I have never felt the same since my 
father died 

I am sorry you also have had a sad loss — I have seen many notices 
of it in the Papers. The longer I live the less I understand the scheme 
of life that comprises so much sadness in it. I wish we could under- 


PateUmJ Tim. In ,ic poncium xf tkt Hon. Gtrald Fenanby. 

Lady Maria Ponsonby 

stand more. Will you tell Lady Maria I am so looking forward to 
seeing her ? I feel like Lady Dorothy, who once, when you had gone 
abroad, said she was glad you had rainy weather because you should 
have stayed in London. — Yours sincerely, Katb Grbbnaway. 

After a visit to Mr. and Mrs. Locker-Lampson at Rowfant to 
recuperate her health she wrote : — 

Katb Grbbnaway to Lady Maria Ponsonby 

39, Frognal, 9 Mitf 1894. 

Dear Lady Maria Ponsonby — I have had you and Mr. Ponsonby 
so much in my mind for the last two weeks — and I feel so much I 
would like to write to you, but don't you trouble to write to me, if 
you are too busy. It is a pleasure to write to you — anyhow. 

I think I feel to my real friends as I do to my favourite books — 
they get into my mind after a separation and I am impelled to write 
to them or read them as the case may be. 

I think of one of Mr. Locker-Lampson's favourite stories of Carlyle, 
who said to Mr. Allingham — *' Have a care, Allingham, have a care — 
there's a danger of your making yourself a bit of a bore.' 

These are not quite the words — the original ones are better put. — 
I fear that danger as regards myself. 

I came home from Rowfant last week. I had a nice time. I 
think I am feeling stronger, but sometimes I do not feel very well, but 
of course it is rather a slow process, and it requires patience, which 
quality I don't possess. 

Are you coming to Green Street this month ? will you allow the 
bore to come and see .you, as soon as you do, one afternoon ? // will 
be nice to see you again, I think about you so often. 

The Pictures are not much this year — I mean at the New Gallery 
and the Academy, but I've only seen both in a dense crowd so it is 
hardly fair to say — but the Modern Art strikes me as very FUNNY. 
I would like to go with Mr. Ponsonby to the R.A. I'd like to see the 
effect on him of certain Productions — I am sure you would feel the 
same (shall I call it lovely delight) as I do — in viewing these works of 
art. — I suppose I've grown old jand old-fashioned — ^but really you never 
saw such creatures as disport themselves on -these canvases. You go 
and look, and let me go with you. 

Will you tell Mr. Ponsonby the garden has been made so tidy that 
I shall venture to take him round it when he next comes to Hampstead ? 
The woodbine and carnations are alive and look as if they will do well. 

I am at work again now — my ideas are coming back to mc. I 

185 24 

Kate Greenaway 

feel as if I'd been in the earth for the winter and was beginning to 
wake up. 

We have such gloomy skies every day, it spoils the lovely spring 
look ; if only it would rain and be done with it ! You see I grumble. 
It does me good. 

I do hope you will soon be in town, and do let me come to tea 
soon, — ^With kind regards to Mr. Ponsonby, your affectionate 

Kate Greenaway. 

And to Lady Mayo, who had again sent her some spring 
flowers : — 

Kate Greenaway to Lady Mayo 

Dear Lady Mayo^What lovely flowers ! I thank you so much. 
There are two of my dearest loves — tulips and that beautiful double 
white narcissus. But I have entirely succumbed to the fascinations 
of a new beauty, the lovely greeny white ranunculus, the pale lilac 
anemones also. But they are all so lovely and are an immense delight 
to me. I always rejoice over a new flower. I wish I had time to 
paint them all, but I have not just now for I am doing a river scene 
from my studio window. You will say you do not remember a river 
there. Perhaps, but I will show you the drawing if I have the pleasure 
of seeing you some time. The spring trees change so quickly, but I 
am going to put your tulips into this very drawing, where a little girl 
carries a large bunch of them. 

The striped ones are so wonderful, the real old-fashioned ones. 
They are one of my earliest recollections. I remember walking up a 
path in my aunt's garden that was two long lines of them, and I was 
so small that I remember bending them down to me to look at their 
wonderful centres. Again thank you very much for the joy you have 
given me. — Yours sincerely, Kate Greenaway. 

In the latter part of July she paid a visit to Mr. Raskin and 
wrote of It : — 

Kate Greenaway to Mr. Ponsonby 

39, FftOGNAL, Hampstkao, N.W., 
9M Auguu 1894. 

Dear Mr. Ponsonby — I am only just home from Coniston ; it has 
been quite beautiful. I found Mr. Ruskin so much better than I ex- 
pected, of course not his old self, yet even at times there really seemed 
no difference — it has been great happiness — ^and the country there — as 
you know — ^is lovely beyond words. I went to see Wordsworth's 


Fndl and Tml. In ill! f<il<i<mi eflkt Hi.«. GeraM Fmaf 

Latter-Day Art 

country and his two houses, Rydal Mount and Dove Cottage — the 
G^ttage is so pretty and they are getting back all the old furniture — 
(protected by strings from the enthusiastic Americans). I sent you 
the little plants from the Brantwood Garden. I thought it would be 
of interest to you to have them — ^that is the pink and the white. The 
other is a little bit from our garden, you said you would like to have — 
I can give you plenty more if it does not live. 

Will you please give my love to Lady Maria — I meant to have 
written to her before this, but I really had no moments while I was away, 
but I shall write to her in a day or two before I go to Cromer, where 
I think I am going next week. I am looking forward to Bournemouth, 
it is always such a happy time for me — it is very close and warm here. 
I hoped I should by now have felt stronger than I do^but I daresay 
it takes time. — Yours sincerely, Katb Grbbnaway. 

On October i6th, she writes to Lady Maria Ponsonby : — 

Tell Mr. Ponsonby I hatb Beardsley more than ever. It is the 
Private View of the Portrait Painters at the New Gallery to-morrow. 

zm Oct, 

All these days ago and no letter finished — ^not a moment of time 
have I had. Some of the Portrait Painters have been slightly up to 
games. Indeed I'm rather inclined to think a Portrait Exhibition is 
slightly trying. The different expressions give rather the feeling of 
what children call making faces. And then there are the different 
schools. Some you look at through a hazy mist. Others confront 
you in deadly black and ugliness. I can't somehow help feeling a 
great deal of Funniness whenever I now visit an exhibition of Pictures. 

By November ist she is again at work and writes to 
Ruskin : — 

I have been drawing a baby six months old this morning. I wished 
for the back of its head, but I proved so fascinating, it would only gaze 
at me, with a stony stare. The drawing did not prosper — but the 
baby was a dear. 

And on Nov. 29 this child of fortv-eight writes of the * pre- 
cocious woman of thirteen' (as quaintly alleged) of whom all the 
world was then talking : ^ — 

^ It will be remembered that although Marie Bashkirtieff was giYen oat to be 
thirteen the facta in the book prove that the was fonr yean older. 


Kate Greenaway 

Rate Greenaway to Ruskin 

I finished the first volume of Marie Bashkirtsefi^ Have you ever 
read it ? I think her odious — simply — ^but the book is wonderful in a 
way, so vivid, and though you— or rather I — hate her you feel she 
must be clever. You ought to read it if you have never done so. 
Johnny won't see it is clever because he hates her, but I dislike her 
but feel she is clever. It is a study of supreme vanity, making your- 
self the centre of all things. It is queer to be ambitious in that way. 
You can't feel it a noble ambition — ^very much the reverse. 

She is grown up at thirteen when she ought to be having the 
most beautiful child's thoughts. I feel it quite dreadful to miss that 
happy time out of your life. Perhaps one prefers one thing, one an- 
other. I hated to be grown-up, and cried when I had my first long 
dress, but I know many long to be grown-up, but even that longing is 
childish — but this unfortunate girl was grown-up virithout knowing it. 

Still, her history does affect me, I keep thinking about her. She 
is so strange— so desperately worldly, and I think so cruel — because 
she was so vain. I wonder if you have ever read ic. 

The year 1894, which had begun so sadly with the death of 
Mrs. Greenaway, had happily in store for Kate the beginning of 
one of her rare and highly valued intimacies. The acquaintanceship, 
which soon ripened into friendship and then into warm aiFection, 
began with a written request in May for the loan of some of her 
pictures for an Exhibition in Southwark. The writer was Miss 
Violet Dickinson, to whom a little later on she was personally 
introduced bv a common friend. From that time forward the 
two ladies, tne old and the young, were much in each other's 
company at ^ private views ' and other ceremonies, and the fact 
that her friend was tall and slim beyond the average and Kate 
as noticeably short and stout, not only drew attention to their 
companionship but served as a constant text for the exercise 
of Kate's humorous invention. Their correspondence by letter 
was incessant and Miss Greenaway's pencil was generally 
requisitioned to give an added note of piquancy and fancy to her 
written communications. Many of these little thumbnail sketches, 
through Miss Dickinson's kindness, are reproduced in this volume, 
together with numerous extracts from the letters. One note 
there is upon which Kate is for ever harping, an underlying fear 
which is for ever haunting her. As we know she was slow at 
making friendships, but when they were made they became an 


From a iparer-co/cttr drawing in tJke posseuim ofCharUi P. yohnson. Esq, 

Miss Greenaway's Private Opinions 

essential feature of her existence, and she was in constant terror 
lest they should be lost. * Dor!t begin to find me very dull — don't 
begin not to want me. Yet you can't help it if you do. I 
suppose I am so slow and you are so quick ' — is but one amongst 
innumerable examples of the little panics into which she would 
causelessly fall. 

Into one other essential characteristic of hers we obtain some 
insight in these letters. That Kate held no very definite or 
orthodox religious opinions, although she had a strong religious 
instinct, is hinted at in many of her letters to Ruskin and others. 
But it is only from her letters to Miss Dickinson that we are able 
to gather anything positive on a subject upon which in con- 
versation her natural reserve restrained her from enlarging. 

On this last matter she writes : — * I am such a reserved person. 
You tell everything to everybody and I can't. There's numbers 
of things I often long to say to you but I do not dare — and yet 
you are the one person in the world I'd like to talk about them 

To a friend she said one day : — * I am very religious though 
people may not think it, but it is in my own way,* and the follow- 
ing extracts from letters to Miss Dickinson give us some idea ot 
what that way was : — 

March 22, 1896. 

You can go into a beautiful new country if you stand under a large 
apple tree and look up to the blue sky through the white flowers — to 
go to this scented land is an experience. 

I suppose I went to it very young before I could really remember 
and that is why I have such a wild delight in cowslips and apple- 
blossom — -they always give me the same strange feeling of trying t9 
remember^ as if I had known them in a former world. 

I always feel Wordsworth must have felt that a little too — ^when he 
wrote the * Intimations of Immortality * — I mean the trying to remember. 

It's such a beautiful world, especially in the spring. It's a pity it's 
so sad also. I often reproach the plan of it. It seems as if some less 
painful and repulsive end could have been found for its poor helpless 
inhabitants — considering the wonderfulness of it all. — ^WELL, it isn't 
the least use troubling. . 

April 2^y 1S97. 

I think Death is the one thing I can't reconcile with a God. After 
such wonderful life, it seems such a miserable ending— to go out of 
life with pain. Why need it be ? 


Kate Greenaway 

Jtdy 8, 1896. 

You think/ 1 know, that people are well off when they leave this 
world, but then there's the uncertain other — or nothing — it is a 
mystery I wish we had known more about. 

It feels to me so strange beyond anything I can think, to be able to 
believe in any of the known religions. Yet how beautiful if you but 
could. Fancy feeling yourself saved — as they say, set apart to have a 
great reward. For what ? Those poor little bits of sacrifice — ^while 
many and many an unregenerate one is making such big ones — but 
isn't to go to heaven ? 

Jutf 10, 1896. 

Did you ever believe at all in religion, I mean did you ever believe 
it as the Bible gives it ? I never did — it's so queer. — Why^ one tries to 
be good simply because you must — are so unhappy if you don't. — ^A 
conscience is a troublesome thing at times. I woke up at 4 o'clock 
this morning and I spent the time feeling what a nothing I was, and 
wishing I was so very different. Then the morning's post brought me 
a letter from a friend, saying I was so this, so that — it made me really 
cry, I was so grateful. 

Dec, 13, 1896. 

I could never believe as long as I can remember — ^yet I went 
through all sorts of religious phases of my own — times when I used to 
write down yes or no in a little book each night as to whether I had 
done all I thought right in the day or not — oh, and lots of things — ^but 
I have never believed — ^in that religion — though I do in my own. A 
woman once said to me, *Any religion that is to be any good to one 
must be one they make for themselves,' — and it is so. She, curiously, 
was a clergyman's wife. 

JuM 14, 1897. 

I wish there was no death. It's so horrible, things having to be 
killed for us to eat them — ^it feels so witked. Yet we have to do it — 
or die ourselves. These are the sort of things that make you doubt of 
a future life. There's some people would say animals have no souls — 
but they have — some sort 

Don't you wish you knew if you had got an eternal soul or not ? 
People believe half things in such a funny way, and mix up right and 
wrong — so that I am so often nearly thinking, is there a right and 
wrong — only I know there is — but I would like it decided once for all 
what is right and what is wrong. 


Miss Greenaway as a Humorist 

Nov, 3, 1897. 

Vm. depressed too by the horrid tales about people. You don't 
know how miserable it makes me — I'm so sorry — it takes all the joy 
out of things. Goodness is so beautiful and so much best. I hate 
narrow people who would take all the beauty and gaiety from the 
world. I love all that, but I hate wickedness. Oh, it is such a pity — 
and the things people say are horrid. I wish they would not tell me. 

In her correspondence with Miss Violet Dickinson, Kate's 
spirits would sometimes overflow into sketches of a character more 
broadly comic than the public generally has had any example of. 
Thus, during the hot July of 1096, she dashes ofF a sketch of her- 
self enjoying the ' bliss ' of a shower from a watering-can, and 
writes : — 

What are you doing in this tropical heat — I'm so hot. I'm crimson 
when I set out — ^and purple when I get there — oh, everywhere. Out 
in the garden — the sun blazes on me. . . . 

On the 1 0th December she accoimts for her temporary seclu- 
sion bv a sketch of herself as a solitary hermit withdrawn from the 
far-off world ; and a month later, still in the comic mood, she 
pictures herself in the throes of composition, and writes in answer 
to her friend's remark upon her verses : ^Dear' (her method of 
addressing well-loved intimates, omitting their names) ; — 

Kate Grbenaway to Miss Violet Dickinson 


Yes it is a fine thing to have a friend who writes lovely 

poems ? 

Across the lonely desert grand. 
Across the yellow ridged sand 
The lurid sunset filled the land 
With desolate despair. 

And after a vigorous thumb-nail sketch of the said desert, she 
adds ; — 

Tou can't do as good as that — besides you can't make a picter. 

The year 1895, which marks Kate's last appearance in the 
Royal Academy exhibitions, with a ^ Baby Boy,' also found her 
represented at the Liverpool Exhibition, and at the Royal Insti- 
tute of Painters in Water-Colours by 'Gleaners going Home,' 
'Girl and Two Children,' 'Little Girl in Red,' and 'Taking a 


Oa 1 Lttttr to MIu Violet DickioMQ 
(.bowing ' K. G.' iD ■ comic vein). 

b6y^ CM*^ 

10. ^tJU 






On ■ Letter td Miu Violet Dickinina 
(thowini 'K. G.' in i humoroui mood). 

III. I* 




V-v^^ Kie Juc; UswsJi P(i<«^ 

dtum Ila Ijlilo liulyii 'i'^cf 

On a Leltrr to Miu Violet Didtiiuon. 
(An cumpit of 'K. G.'t' opiiil of ooricmtiite.) 

From the vater-colour drawing In tht ptnstsnon vf the Hon, Mrt. W. he Poer Trench- 

Letters to Ruskin 

Nosegay.' Otherwise the year was uneventful save for her now 
one-sided correspondence with Ruskin, from which we take the 
following letters and extracts. They present us with intimate 
glimpses of her artistic and literary tastes , her hatred of change 
and the confusion of life ^ her discontent with her work and her 
determination to do better in the future ; her love of space i her 
artistic methods ; her views upon the Impressionist tendency of 
art ; and last, but not in her eyes less important, extracts from 
Rover's biography. 

Katb Grbbnaway to Ruskin 

39, FftOGNAL, 

The New Tear, 1S95. 

I have been to the Venetian Exhibition ^ — but I have 

not seen it well yet. The crowds of people prevented. 

There are some beautiful Ladies' Portraits in such 

lovely dresses and their hair done into those big rolls all round 
their faces. I was so impressed by two heads by Giorgione— one a 
Shepherd with a Flute,' so lovely, and Portrait of a Lady Pro- 
fessor of Bologna — the colour is so beautiful (and the way they are 
painted). I think I will tell you about the beautiful Ladies next 
time — because I have forgotten entirely the most beautiful Lady's 
name ' — though I remember her so well. She is dark and looks at 
you rather timidly and rather frightened — she has a curious rolled 
thing round her head, I can't tell what it is made of — ^little curls of 
ribbon perhaps and here and there little white bows. She has a 
background of white flowers, but I will tell you more of her next 

And Christmas is over and it is nearly the New Year — I fear I am 
glad Christmas // over for I want some lighter days. I don't like 
getting up in the morning when the moon is shining— and the stars 
are still about. I see the sun rise as I have my breakfast, pale and 
cold — but it is very nice to see the daylight come. 

I am finishing General Marbot : It is a truly wonderful book, it 
seems hardly possible people could be so brave — as they are — and 
most certainly as I could not be — I certainly hope England may never 
be invaded in my time — too fearful. 

How I wish I could have come in to tea with you on New Year's 
Day. Suppose there was a little tap at your study door — and I came 

^ Held at the New Gallery, London. 
* From the Hampton Court Collection. 
* Lent by Loniia Lady Aahburton. The * beautiful lady's name ' it unknown. 


Kate Greenaway 

in carrying a lovely Hot Muffin — ^would you turn me out, or allow me 
to sit down by your fire and enjoy myself? 

Did I tell you Eddie had come home (from Plauen in Germany) 
for Christmas — so all my time is taken up in making it a merry time. 
I had them all to tea and he danced and sang Nursery Rhymes and 
Looby Loo. Do you know that ? it is so pretty. 

And then I think you would have liked to have seen my sister's 
little girl and little boy dance the Barn Dance — I would like to paint 
it — she is very pretty, and so is the little boy. To-morrow we all go 
to Olympia — and on Wednesday to Drury Lane — on Thursday I 
have another tea with more children — Saturday is the sad day he has 
to go back again. All the little Correggio curls are gone now. 

New Year's Day was my Mother's Birthday, so I shall be with no 
one on that day—- except I shall think of the study and you at 5 o'clock, 
and think I am coming to tea there. 

It is shivery — ice everywhere — How much I wish things would 
not change so much — so soon — so often — I can never understand the 
flan of life at all, it is all so strange — try which way you will to 
think it out — it all seems of no use — ^yet you go on trying for this — 
for that — ^really for some mysterious end — you don't know. 

I hope you will have a very very Happy Year, and have 

beautiful days, and lots of sunshine — and for myself I will wish that 
I may see you again before it is ended. 

Kate Green a way to Ruskin 

Feb, 10, 1895. 

Did you ever in your life read one of George Meredith's novels ? 
it requires you to be in an angelic frame of mind or else it is that sort 
of worry — trying to make out what he means — for it isn't encouraging 
while he describes all his people laughing at a brilliant joke, for you 
to be unable to see the drift of it. 

Whatever you do don't read Lord Ormont and his A mint a. It all 
comes of my being sentimental and romantic. The title was so lovely, 
but don't you be induced by any means to begin it. 

But if you do want to read something that is uncommonly nice 
get Passages from some Memoirs by Mrs. Ritchie and read about the 
children's party at Charles Dickens', about Carlyle and Mrs. Carlyle, 
about her recollections of her childish days in Paris, her remem- 
brance of Leech, of Charlotte Bronte — it is all so nice, so kind, so 

I hear from Mr. Locker-Lampson that there is a real new poet, 
brand new ; he says his name is Davidson and he has written a poem 
called The Ballad of a Nun, That's all I know of it for I have not 



read it yet. Peihapi I shan't think him a poet, I fear I like them 
of the sort : — 

When iluiie* pied and violett blue 

And lady-unocks all silver- white 

And all the thcphetd *wain* ahall (ing 
For ihy delight each May morning. 

How the beautiful words come into your mind — and then it is 
spring and you forget it is snowing outside and the wind whirling the 
wreaths of snow about. It is very Arctic snow, I never saw such 
lovely little crystals 

Do you know, I had made up my mind to send you a real valentine 
— and I invented all, just how it was all to go— then I had a horrid 
cold and could only think how nice to go to sleep, so the poor valentine 
never got done. 1 was very sorry but it could not be helped. And I 
had also a good deal to do to my Institute drawings, which are very 
bad. So perhaps it is as well I had the cold, only it was all so nicely 

I have got £ve bad drawings — ' Gleanen going Home,' * A Little 
Girl in Red,' ' A Girl nursing a Baby,' ' Another Little Girl and a Green 
Cradle,' and 'A Girl walking with two Little Children.' 

The ' Gleanen ' is, I think, the best — I fear you would say efa baiht. 

Never mind, I'm going to begin beautiful things directly I can get 
rid of these — which is next Tuesday — but I always think they are 
going to be beautiful when I begin, then I generally get to hate them 
before they arc done. 

Al-.. 11,1895. 

I am still in a state of great perplexity as to 
what work to do and as to what to agree to about 
books. There is no Almanack this year. Now 
they want to do it again and I find it hard to decide 
if I will or not — partly because I do not make up 
my mind about what I want to do in other ways. 
But often when I feel like this I wait, and an 
inspiration comes. 

Some beautiful picture c 
me long to do something. 
I ought always to do everything the moment it 
suggests itself, or very likely by the time I go to om Letter to 

do it the spirit of it has vanished. Rutkin. 

I do the technical part of painting so badly, 
and every one else seems to do it so well. I have no settled way 
of working — I am always trying this or that. That is why I get on 

Kate Greenaway 

better when I am doing a cottage because I naturally do just what 
I see and do not think of the way to do it at all. 

Does this all bore you or interest you ? I am so sorry I can't draw 
when I am with you and can't do drawings you like much now. One 
reason is I am never as strong as I was and I can't bear the strain. It is 
a considerable one to do a large pencil drawing of that sort. It wants 
to be so fresh and spontaneous — if it is rubbed out at all it is spoiled. 

Kate Grbenaway to Ruskin 

Nov. 30M, 1S95. 

Vou will be grieved to hear that Rover yesterday had a fearful 
fight with his always enemy, the yellow dog, a truly amiable deer- 
hound ; why Rover's enemy we can't tell. The fight resulted in a 
real black eye for Rover, who could not see out of it all yesterday. 
This morning it is better and he has been standing on his hind legs 
looking out of the window the last half-hour — liking to look, as he 
can see again this morning, but also I fear hoping his enemy may pass 
by and he may renew the fight. The yellow dog has sometimes made 
overtures of friendship but Rover remains obdurate. I fear he likes 
an enemy — it ofiFers an agreeable excitement 

The truth of Rover's enmity for the great yellow dog is that 
one day his tail got caught in the gate, which was a si^ht not to 
be resisted by the previously friendly and amiable yellow dog, 
who at once set teeth in it. Rover was deeply offended at the 
time, and after brooding awhile over his grievance determined on 
action. Thus the strained relations of a few days developed into 
hostilities, thereafter constantly renewed. 

Dee. 3. 

Some cows have come into the field opposite i^hich have now 
entirely absorbed Rover^s interest. He remains fixed at the dining- 
room window gazing upon them with a fixed gaze, as much as to say, 
'What are these extraordinary large quiet animals, who don't run 
about and bark ? ' 

Kate Greenaway to Rusrin 

Dec, 9, 1895. 

I am still doing all sorts of drawing — pencil ones with colour — I 
think them rather pretty. I wish you would like a new sort — a little 
— I seem to want to put in shade so much more than I used to. I 
have got to love the making out of form by shade — the softness of it. 


From a toater-colow drawing in tAe possession of Alfi-ed Emmotf^ Esf.y M.P. 

Kate Greenaway 

for a friend. Yet, how every one liked him though he was so trouble- 
some ! I must say I should have found it hard work to sit up till four 
o'clock in the morning, talking and pouring out tea ! Think of the 
hours ! and they had their dinner at four o'clock in the afternoon. 
Mrs. Thrale must have been the most good-natured person in the 
world, indeed I can't help feeling people were not very grateful 
to her. 

Kate Greenaway to Ruskin 

Dec, i6, 1895. 

I am reading a horrid book by a man with a horrid face. I once 
saw the author, and I said, ' Who is that loathsome man ? ' — Well, I 
read no more of his books — that's settled. 



I 896- I 89 7 




By way of accentuating the uneventfulness of Miss Greenaway's 
quiet life apart from her art, it is perhaps worthy of notice that 
the year 1896 found her staying at a hotel for only the second 
time in her life, the occasion being a visit to Miss Dorothy 
Stanley at Southwold shortly before that lady's marriage to Mr. 
AUhusen, M.P. 

To Kate the most noteworthy events of this year were her 
presence at Lord Leighton's funeral at St. Paul's on February 2nd ; 
the purchase of one of her drawings by Lady Dorothy Nevill as 
a wedding present for the Princess Maud of Wales; a single 
exhibit, ^Little Bo-Peep,' at the Royal Institute ; and one of her 
rare public appearances to give away Mr. Ruskin's gold cross and 
chain to the May Queen of the year (bv reason of her popularity 
among her fellow-pupils) at the May-Jay celebration at White- 
lands College, Chelsea. 

He had asked her once before, through Mrs. Severn, but she 
had begged hard to be excused : — 

50, Frognal, Hampstkai>, N.W., 

My dearest Joanie — I'm afraid — and feel 1 ought not to say yes. 
First place, I have been so unwell and get so tired. . . . Tm afraid it 
would be exciting to me. Also I can't or ought not to spare the 
morning. If it were the afternoon it would make a difference. I don't 
like saying noy as you and he [Mr. Ruskin] wish it — but if you could 

201 26 

Kate Greenaway 

find a nice somebody else, I'd go next ycftr if I were in London. You 
know I'm not fitted for Public Poiti. ... So do be dear — get some 
one else to give the cross. , . . 

Good-bye, dear Joanie, isn't tliink me hateful or anything horrid — 
and da dt go to the R.A, and look out for — Your very loving, 


Beyond these incidents the interest of the year is confined to 
her letters. She always had on band for Ruskin one epistle, to 

which she would sit down at any odd moment between meals, 
exercise, and work, despatching it as soon as the end of the sheet 
was reached. 

As usual these letters are full of references to what she is paint- 
ing and reading, of her views of life and religion, of her likes and 
dislikes in art, of her love of flowers, of Rover, and of little 
touches of self-revelation. Here and there we find a bit of keen 
observation, and once a half-humorous, half-wistful protest against 
the comparative homeliness of her appearance. 


Love of Street Noises 

Kate Greenaway to Ruskin 

JoH, 5, 1S96. 

I have been reading a curious book called The Wonderjul Visit?- A 
man goes out to shoot a strange bird, and shoots instead — an Angel ! — 
Somehow the author does manage to make you feel the angel very 
beautiful and superior to all about him, but of course it is all unreal, 
and his idea of heaven doesn't fit in with mine. I say with mine, and 
I haven't an idea. I have often tried to think out what I would like 
it to be like, and I never can, for there is always something does not 
fit in. 

Kate Greenaway to Ruskin 

Jan, 22, 1896. 

Do you like the sound of things in the streets ? They want to 
get up a society to suppress the noises — they asked me to belong and 
seemed to think it very funny when I said I liked them ; what do 
you think ? 

I feel so cheerful when I hear an organ playing nice lively tunes. 
I love a band. I like seeing the Salvation Army (though I should, I 
fear, be angry if I lived near the sound of their preaching) marching 
along and singing. I like the sound of the muffin bell, for I seem 
again a little girl coming home from school in the winter afternoons. 
I don't like the beggars because I feel too much pain to think of them 
so destitute, but if I could believe they got pennies enough I could like 
them. I like the flower-sellers, and the fruit stalls, and the sound of 
church bells. 

So what could I say ? I should not like silence always. It is 
often when I have had enough silence I go into the cheerful streets 
and find it a rest. 

Kate Greenaway to Ruskin 

39, Fmognal, 29 Jm, 1896. 
I am so very sorry Leighton is dead — I did not know 

him, 1 never talked to him — ^yet I am s$ sorry. He seemed always to 
me one of the few who cared for real Beauty. Now it is all something 
new — something startling, but if it is beautiful does not matter. All 
the same there seems some real sorrow that Leighton is dead. . • . 

I have got a very interesting book about Mrs. Montague — Mrs. 
Thrale's Mrs. Montague, I mean. I seem to have known her slightly 
so long, but not to have known anything really as to who she was and 
what she did. I think she must have been quite delightful. 

1 The fTcnderfid Fldt, by H. G. Wells (1895). 


Kate Greenaway 

What a lovely thing a purple crocus is. I told you about a book, 
the Midsummer Night^s Dream^ illustrated by Anning Bell.^ He has 
done little crocuses all over the grass and I think them so pretty. 
I shall draw some when they come up-— but the unkind little sparrows 
peck them to bits in our garden directly they open. Don't you call 
that a bad return for giving them bread all their lives ? — If I were 
talking to you, you'd say NO to tease me — I know you would. 

But they ARE bad sparrows truly — because they peck the almond 
blossoms in just the same way. Johnny is so indignant and comes to 
me and says — * Look what jour sparrows are doing ! ' — My sparrows ? 

There was a bad thrush once lived in the garden, a robber thrush, 
who came to a bad end. 

Now if there are no dreadful frosts there will be a great bank of 
wallflowers by and by. Only once since we have lived here have 
they succeeded in living well through the winter. Mrs. Docksey sent 
me such pretty flowers yesterday and a dear little pot to hold them, 
violets and snowdrops — ^wasn't it very kind of her ? 

[Here comes a little sketch of a fairy flying across the moon.] 

That's because I have been looking at the old Midsummer Night*s 
Dream with Kenny Meadows' drawings. I DO like them, for they 
are really fairylike. As a very little child they were my Sunday 
evenings' amusement whilst my mother and father read. My eldest 
sister played and sang. I got to know all the plays when I was very 
little indeed from the pictures. I think the names of the Italian 
towns got their great charm in my mind from this time, mixed up with 
so much of the moonlight he puts into them. 

The sound of Verona — Padua — Venice — ^what beautiful sounding 
names he got for his plays, didn't he ? — but then, he makes that charm 
over everything. The spring flowers in his hands are nearly as beautiful 
as themselves, and the girls* names — Viola — Olivia — Perdita. 

Oh dear ! Things are so beautiful and wonderful, you feel there 
must be another life where you will see more — ^hear more — and knon 
more. All of it cannot die. 

I hope you get out every day for nice walks. Though I do not 
wish time away I am glad this is February, the first spring month. 
I wonder what you read now. 

Kate Green away to Ruskin 

Feb, 1 8, 1896. 

Did you ever read Peter Ibbetson^ the first book Mr. du Maurier 
wrote ? I am reading it now. / think it absolutely beautiful — it affects 

1 Robert Anning Bell, R.W.S. 

* A baby with pink sath and pink ribbons.' 

From a ivater-colour drawif^ in the pouttskm of Stuart M. Samuel^ Eiq^ Ai.P^ 



Du Maurier and Aubrey Beardsley 

me so much. I have always liked Mr. du Maurier, but to think there 
was all thiiy and one didn't know it. I feel as if I had all this time 
been doing him a great injustice — not to know. 

It is such a wonderful thing to have thought of it all — it is so un- 
worldly — ^such a beautiful idea — ^an exquisite fancy. I long to tell him 
how much I love it. 

Miss Greenaway was also a great admirer of du Maurier as 
a black-and-white artist, and after his death she wrote to Miss 
Dickinson : — 

All the du Maurier drawings are now at the Fine Art [Society] — 
I am very sorry to think there will be no more — no more Mrs. 
Ponsonby de Tomkins. He told me he got so fond of her in the end, 
he could not let the retribution fall upon her that he intended to 
finish her up with. I doubt if Punch ever gets his like again ; and he 
was such a nice man. 

Kate Greenaway to Ruskin 

Feb, 25, 1896. 

I wonder if you ever see any illustrations of Aubrey Beardsley's 
and what do you think of them ? I would like to know. A great 
many people are now what they call modern. When I state my likes 
and dislikes they tell me I am not modern, so I suppose I'm not — 
advanced. That is why, I suppose, I see some of the new pictures as 
looking so very funny. You must not like Leighton now, or Millais, 
and I don't know how much longer Fm to be allowed to like Burne- 
Jones. Oh dear ! I believe I shall ever think a face should look 
like a face, and a beautiful arm like a beautiful arm — not that I can 
do it — the great pity I can't. Why, if I could, they should have 
visions. Sometimes I almost wish I were shut up by myself with 
nothing to do but to paint— only I'm sq dependent on people's affec- 
tion. I'm not lonely by myself but I want the people I like very much 
sometimes. I feel I shall not do anything of what I could wish in 
my life. Isn't it hard sometimes when you have felt the beauty of 
something in a certain way and have done it so and no one you show 
it to seems to see it at all. But I suppose if it is really a good thing 
you have done that, after years, some one does feel it, while if it is 
not worth finding out it goes into oblivion — so Time sifts it all out. 
Such is not my fate, for I unfortunately can only think of all the 
beautiful things and have not the skill to do them. 


Kate Greenaway 

Kate Greenaway to Ruskin 

Marck 2, 1896. 

The almond buds are all pink, but I don't want them out till there 
are some nice little white daisies beneath them. 

Do you remember the little poem on the daisy by Jane or Ann 
Taylor ? It is one of the earliest remembrances with me ; my mother 
used to say it to us so much. 

Little lady, as you pass 
Ughdy o'er the tender grass, 
Step about but do not tread 
On my meek and lowly head ; 
For I always seem to say. 
Surely, Wmtcr's gone away. 

Now, after saying I remember it, I find I don't, for that is the 
last verse — and I know part of it goes : — 

For my head is covered flat 
With a white and yellow hat. 

Her letters to Miss Dickinson too are fuU of her garden. 
Two or three extracts must suffice. In February : — 

IVe had a deep disappointment to-day. Some one told me of a 
nice old gardener who wanted a little more work. I thought he 
would just do for us so I wrote, and when he called, instead of the old 
man there stood a gorgeous young one in a gorgeous white tie. My 
heart sank. — He began : — 

*• Path wants gravelling. 
Grass wants seeding, 
Roses want pruning, 
Trees want cutting. 
Everything wants rolling. 
Everything wants nailing up.' 

A nice idea ! my cherished garden made the exact facsimile of 
every one in Frognal. I found myself composing the note that should 
dismiss him later on. Nothing should induce me to consent to such 

A month later she returns to the subject : — 

I can really boast with truth that we have larger and more varied 
weeds in our garden than you have in yours — in fact, our garden 
has forgotten that it is a garden and is trying to be a field again. 


The Opinions of Others 

And on April i : — 

It ir a Pool't Day — this year snowing so hard — making such a 
mistake in the time of year — All the poor flowers wondering what's up. 
How I hate it. 

Kate Grbenaway to Ritskin 

MdTcA 11,1896. 

1 do not have much to tell you about dear Rover. He has not 
been very funny lately. He can't fight — in the muzzle. He tries to 
but the other dogs don't see it. 

Johnny always insists the cause of the fights is that Rover boasli 
of all the superior things he gets here, and the other dogs can't stand 
it. He says, */ have a mutton chop for my dinner' — and what can 
the other dog say ? except that perhaps he piriaket of the bone of one, 
or a paltry dog-biscuit, white Rover revels in beefsteak — beefsteak pic, 
pork pie, and rabbit. 

Kate Greenaway to Ruskin 

Marek \%^. 

How fanny it is, the different ways different people feel you ought 
to work ! and people who, you feel, should know. One man said. 

'K. C woamiD it a Stkav Pufpv. 
On ■ Letter to Raskin. 

'Now, what 1 would like to sec is all these things done life sizi\ 

Another comes back as if he had quite a weight on his mind to say he 


Kate Greenaway 

feels he must tell me how much he feels I ought to etch, so that my 
own original work was kept. Some one else wants me always to do 
small things ; some one else, landscapes, — so it goes on. The man with 
the donkey who tried to please everybody is nothing to it ! 

Kate Greenaway to Hon. Mrs. Sutton Nblthorpe 

GoodFritUy^ 1896. 

I was given quite the wrong sort of body to live in, I am sure. I 
ought to have been taller, slimmer, and at any rate passably good-look- 
ing, so that ray soul might have taken flights, my fancy might have 
expanded. Now, if I make a lovely hat with artistic turns and twists 
in it, see what I look like ! I see myself then as I see others in the 
trains and omnibuses with things sticking up over one eye. I say. Ah, 
there goes me ! I do laugh often, as I look. 

In something of the same strain she writes to Miss Violet 
Dickinson : — 

The beautiful Lady looked too lovely for anything yesterday in a 
pale green bonnet, a purple velvet and sable cloak and a black satin 
dress. 1 do m z way envy their riches — I could have such beautiful 
things, you would not know 39, Frognal. You'd come into such a 
dream of beauty, and the garden too, such a sight would meet your 
eyes, pots and tubs of lovely flowers all over. 

In respect of Miss Greenaway's indifference to fine clothes for 
herself Mrs. Loftie points out how curious it was ' that with her 
delicate taste in dressing her subjects she did not know how or 
did not take the trouble to make the best of herself.' 

Kate Greenaway to Ruskin 

July 9, 1896. 

' I saw two little children in an omnibus yesterday — two little girls, 
I was so much taken with their faces — they had such small eyes but 
exactly the shape of some Italian ones. I seemed to know every line 
as I had seen it in carved Italian faces — it was so beautifully formed, 
all the eyelid round the eye. ... I did long to ask their mother to 
let me draw them. I could have done them with such joy. 


Views on Art 

Kate Greenaway to Lady Maria Ponsonby 

Jmly II, 1896. 

I can never define what art really is — in paintings I mean. It 
isn't realism, it isn't all imagination, it's a queer giving something to 
nature that is possible for nature to have, but always has not — at least 
that's my idea. It's what Burne-Jones does when he twists those 
roses all about his people in the Briar Rose. They don't often grow 
like that, but they could, and it's a great comfort to like such things, 
at least I find it so. 

Kate Greenaway to Rusrin 

Aug, 13, 1896. 

I have not had a nice book this week. I read George Fox, the 
Quaker, the other day. He was very wonderful, but some things they 
make a stand for seem hardly worth it, like keeping their hats on. 
But perhaps that is me in fault, for I don't think I am at all regulated 
by Forms ; they don't ever feel to me to matter : I don't feel my life 
gets much shaped by them — but then perhaps it would be better for 
me if it did ! 

Kate Greenaway to Rusrin 

Oct, 21, 1896. 

The colours are beautiful this year. Here, the Heath looks 
wonderful, it is all so brilliant — red orange, emerald green, Rossetti's 
green ; it always makes me think of Rossetti. I see the colour he 
tried for, and how difficult it is ! You can't think what colours to 
paint it with because it always looks so cold when it is done — not a bit 
like the real colour. I despair over grass, I can't do it ! I don't know 
what it is ; I don't know what blue to use— or what yellow. I'm so 
longing to try more body-colour. It's a curious thing everybody runs 
it down — ^yet — all the great water-colour people (the modern ones) 
have used it — W. Hunt, Walker, Pinwell, Rossetti^ Burne-Jones, 

Kate Greenaway to Ruskin 

Oct, 28, 1896. 

I have not seen any one or been anywhere so there is nothing to 
tell you about. Yes, I did go out to lunch last Sunday and sat next 
to an unenthusiastic young architect. I thought this — ^Am I so dull, 
or is he dull ? It felt very depressing. I don't mind shy persons if 
they will only kindle up when you talk to them — often at first I do 

209 27 

Kate Greenaway 

not get on with people (espedally men), but in a little while generally 
things take a turn. I suppose I am very shy, really, yet when they are 
quite the right people I meet I am not lo at all. I don't think you 
thought me so, did you i I know I did not feel so, though before 
you came I thought so much of your coming it got to be really a pain, 
and I said I almost wish he was not coming. But then the first 
moment I saw you, I was glad — so glad. 

How different everything i a when you are with the right people ! 
When they are wrong they make me so tired. Some people think this 
BO arrogant — I never can see why — I should never mind it at all, or 
never do mind if people don't find me to their taste, and leave me 
alone. I think it's far more simple and right, and better so, I don't 
feel what I think is ifjt or rigit, it least of course I tie think so. 

A lady said to me the other day, 'We all do so many things we 
know are wrong.' Do we ! That seems to me a cowardly way to live. 
Surely we do what me tAiak right however mistaken we may be. Why 
go through those struggles with your conscience ? why accept the 
sacrifice for yourself, the denial of your wishes, and yet think yourself 
a sinner f No, I can't sec it ! though I've often tried, because people 
have, as I said, seemed to think it arrogant — but I have never been 
able to see it, it don't seem to me to be true. If you did what you 
thought right, you did right — and there's an end of it ; I can't think 
myself wrong but I can thank what great Power there is that I am led 
to do what I consider right. 

There ! there's a dull long talk ! What put all that into my head 
to talk about, to you ? Is it rather like Harry and Lucy grown up f 


,J^^^^ ^"TOkJ^ 




„ ^ 


On ■ Letter to Mi» Violet Dickinion. 

The year 1897 saw the last of the Almanacks. The ktcr 
issues had been so unsuccessful that Routledge & Sons had dis- 
continued their publication. This year, as has been said, another 


From a wateT'Cohier drawing m tJU fossetsion afjtihn Gnenawayy Esq. 

Work for Mr. Stuart M. Samuel 

publisher attempted their revival, but the demand had ceased and 
the series was abandoned for good and all. 

Mr. Edmund Evans was still the middleman between her 
and the public, that is to say, he was the engraver and the 
responsible man in the enterprise, and it is impossible to estimate 
even approximately by how much her popularity had been en- 
hanced by his excellent engraving and his usually excellent 
printing. Some idea of the extent of their partnership may be 
gathered from the fact that in the twenty years since 1878 there 
had issued from the press in book form alone 932,100 copies 
of their joint productions. How fsLT this enormous number 
might be increased by Christmas cards and independent designs 
for magazines it would be useless even to hazard a guess. 

This year Miss Greenaway contributed for the last time to the 
Royal Institute ; she sent ' Girl in Hat and Feathers ' and ' Two 
Little Girls in a Garden,' but her most important work consisted 
of commissions from Mr. Stuart M. Samuel, M.P., to paint a 
portrait of his little daughter Vera, and to design ^ processions ' 
for the decoration of his nurseries. Mr. Samuel is also the 
possessor, besides many other drawings, of her original designs 
for ^ Day in a Child* s Life, 

Kate Greenaway to Mr. Shtuart M. Samuel 

13 Ap, 1896. 

I cannot tell how much a drawing of your little girl would be. It 
depends on the sort of drawing you want. A small water-colour would 
be jC^S — a little girl like a book drawing j^io. I can only do certain 
kinds of book-plates, nothing heraldic. I do not think I could do a 
book-place to be sure it was a portrait. An ordinary book-plate is ^5 
or £6. I could only undertake to do a portrait here — the little girl 
would have to be brought to me. 

This was done, and what was considered a successful result 
was obtained by January of the following year. The drawing is 
reproduced in this volume. 

Her personal popularity showed no signs of waning, and she 
wrote to Ruskin : — 

Every one seems possessed with the desire of writing articles upon 
me and sends me long lists of all I am to say. Then America worries 
me to give drawings, to give dolls — and I have at last had to give up 


Kate Greenaway 

answering their letters, for the time it wastes is too much to expect 

But though her name was still one to conjure with, there is 
little doubt that her work was not as acceptable as it had been. 
Her reign had been a long one and a new generation was knock- 
ing at the door. She writes thus of her failing grip upon the 
public taste : — 

Kate Greenaway to Lady Maria Ponsonby 

April %z J 1897. 

My mind is in a very perplexed state and I feel very depressed also. 
I seem not to do things well, and whatever I do falls so flat. It is 
rather unhappy to feel that you have had your day. Yet if I had 
just enough money to live on I could be so very happy, painting just 
what I liked and no thought of profit. It's there comes the bother, 
but it's rather difficult to make enough money in a few years to last 
for your life. Yet now every one is so soon tired of things — that is 
what it comes to. 

And on the same date to Ruskin : — 

I have been all the morning painting a yellow necklace and touch- 
ing up a black chair. I do take a time — far too much — they would 
look better if I did them in less. I'm going to do some quite new 
sorts of paintings. When I have finished this lot, I will please myself. 
I'm so tired of these and nothing I do pleases any one else now. 
Every one wants something different so I will please myself now. 

Other letters of the year set forth amongst other things how 
little sympathy she had with the ' Shrieking Sisterhood ' and the 
' New Woman,* how generous was her appreciation of new and 
honest artistic endeavour, how she saw through the hollow pre- 
tence of what was new and dishonest, and how educative she 
found her own painting. It will also be seen that she was always 
on the look-out for a good story with which to amuse the 
' Professor.' 

Kate Greenaway to Ruskin 

Feh, Zftd^ 1897. 

People are rather excited over the Woman's Suffrage Bill, but I 
hope it won't pass next time. I don't want a vote myself and I do 
not want it at all. Some, of course, might vote well but others would 


From a xvater- colour draiving ir, the fossession of Stuart M. Samuel^ ^t^--, M.F.. 

Justice to Women 

follow their feelings too much, I am sure — and get up excitements 
over things best left alone. For my part I do feel the men can do it 
best and so hope it may remain. . 

There's nothing but women's everything this year because of the 
Queen and the festivities, so now there's a chance for them. They 
always feel they are not done justice to. I must say, I in my experience 
have not found it so. I have been fairly treated and I have never had 
any influence to help me. So I can't join in with the things they so 
often say. And then it is generally the second-rate ones who feel they 
should be the first if it were not for unfair treatment, and all the while 
it is want of enough talent. Somehow I have always found, the bigger 
the man the greater his admiration for talent in others. I suppose his 
own genius makes him feel the genius in others and rejoice in it. Not 
one of them can do a picture like a fine Leighton — yet they can't even 
look at him. I did admire Poynter's speech — and how he went for them. 

\ \ f T i "'M^ [IT 

i '»? 



J If^ Cjin mu v^- /Ki- t*^rtr 

IdVMLtfK'tfvO - JCU^ h^.^*^ UuM, «fc ^^^aT 

oLit HuM^ So U^ <t9 ^ . cbvJb J htuJl^^ 
iCuA to Uc KiA^ ^hM-cA " uL/Ui J i!^ 

On a Letter to Miss Violet Dickinson. 

Kate Greenaway 

Kate Grbenaway to Miss Violet Dickinson 

Feb. II, 1897. 

Then there are the strong-minded women, who hold up to my 
vision the hatefulness and shortcomings of MAN — How they are 
going to have exhibitions in this Victoria year, and crush MAN beneath 
their feet by having everything to themselves and showing how much 
better they can do it — ? ? ? ? Worm as I am, my friend, oh what a 
worm they would think me if I dared write and say my true views, 
that having been always fairly and justly treated by those odious men 
that I would far rather exhibit my things with them and take my true 
place, which must be lower than so many of theirs. For I fear we can 
only hope to do — what men can do. It is sad but 1 fear it is so. They 
have more ability. 

Kate Greenaway to Lady Maria Ponsonby 

Feb, 21, 1897. 

My mind is tired out by wretched letters and circulars about various 
exhibitions — the Victorian and others. I am at special enmity with 
the Victoria one because they do go on so. . . . Man is such a viU worm. 
Women are going to blaze forth at this show, I can tell you — at least 
that is what they say — not impeded by the usual fiasco. Heaven knows 
what that means, but I suppose it has to do with the guileful doings 
of Man* 

Have you ever been to the Exhibition of Lady Artists ? You see, 
Fm cross — ^well, this is what they've done — got the people [/>. the 
organisers] to say all the women's pictures may be in the women's 
work part. They agreed at once — no wonder, they must have smiled 
with joy. 

Now why can't we just take our places fairly — get just our right 
amount of credit and no more. Of course we shouldn't get the first 
places — for the very simple and just reason — that we don't deserve 

Kate Greenaway to Rusk in 

Feb, 25, 1897. 

I am reading a curious book called The New Republic^ by Mr. 
Mallock. I don't know yet what it means, but so far it seems so 
different to its author. Some are, and some are not like their books. 
You are like your books. I never understand how they can be two 


On ^ The New Republic ' 

things, yet how often they are. I would rather never see the authors 
if they are different, for I feel then it isn't what they really feel that 
they write about, and that is not a pleasant feeling at all. 

When writing this letter she does not seem to have recognised 
the identity of Mr. Ruskin with the * Mr. Herbert ' of The New 
Republic. Had she done so she would hardly, we may suppose, 
have alluded to the book at all. Within a day or two, however, 
the thing seems to have dawned upon her, for she wrote on 
Feb. 28 :— 

Kate Greenaway to Miss Violet Dickinson 

Feb, 28, 1897. 

Did you ever read T^ New Republic^ by Mr. 'Mallock ? It is 
certainly clever, so much so I feel rather sorry he has written it. I 
should very much like to know who all the people are meant for — we 
cannot decide. I suppose Mr. Ruskin is one.^ Mr. Miller told me 
they were all people he met at Sir Henry Acland's — I can't remember 
if his name is spelt Ac or Ack — and that he was furious at Mr. Mai lock 
taking them off in that way. Anyhow it is very amusing and funny, 
but if the one is Mr. Ruskin he might have done better — but evidently 
he did not know him well 

Kate Greenaway to Ruskin 

March 3, 1897. 

I've got a curious book about the adventures of a young man and 
a girl on bicycles — it is called 7^ Wheels of Chance?' It's very funny. 
The young man is a draper's assistant who is described as weak and 
vulgar (only in the way he talks) and he turns out so nice. I don't 
see why he should be supposed to be vulgar because he is a draper's 
asaistant. He could be quite as noble and good being that as having 
any other trade, as far as I can see. I never can see things that way, 
and people never seem to me to be vulgar because they don't speak 
correctly or know quite what is done in a society a little above them. 

^ Mist Greenaway raised the point again later on with one of the present writers, 
and was vastly interested to learn that Ruskin, as she suspected, is presented as * Mr. 
Herbert,' Huxley as 'Storks,' Tyndall as * Stockton,' Jowett as *Jenkinson,' Kingdon 
Clifford as * Saunders,' Carlyle as * Donald Gordon,' Matthew Arnold as * Luke,* Pater 
as *Rose,' and Hardinge as * Leslie,' while Lady Dilke is *Lady Grace' and Mrs. 
Singleton * Mrs. Sinclair.' ' Then who is Lawrence ? ' asked Miss Greenaway. *• Mal- 
lock himself.' ' Ah ! ' she replied, ' that settles it ; I don't like him.' 

« By H. G. Wells. 


Kate Greenaway 

I think it is vulgar to think them so, if they are nice and do and think 
nice things. But the book has nice feeling, and it would amuse you 
very much to read it. 

Kat£ Greenaway to Ruskin 

^/rt/ 15, 1897. 

Isn't it a funny thing I can't copy ? All the morning I have been 
blundering over a baby's face from a little study. I can't do it a bit ; 
it is odd. I can't get it a bit like the original. I put it in and take 
it out, and so it goes on getting worse and worse. And I wish I could 
do it so much but I never have been able, and it don't matter what it 
is — ^it is everything — the most trifling thing. I never do it well except 
direct from the object or my own mind, but I can't copy a flat thing 
— it really is curious 

The gentleman ^ who has his nursery hung round with my drawings 
has seen those I did for you and is very much taken with them. He 
wanted me to copy the two big ones, but I told him that was perfectly 
impossible. So I'm going to do him a procession later on. Also I 
should not like him to have drawings the same as yours. 

Kate Greenaway to Ruskin 

April 22, 1897. 

I am very fond of Nicholas Nickleby, No one has liked Dickens 
for so long, but I think I begin to see a little turn coming now. Of 
course in time it would be sure to come, but it is a certain fate to every 
one after a time, and then another thing sets in and they take their 
rank for ever 

Kate Greenaway to Ruskin 

Afril 27, 1897. 

I went to the R.A. yesterday. Every one has turned portrait 
painter — Briton Riviere does ladies and their pet animals — Orchardson 
all portraits — Herkomer also. There is one picture I think beautiful. 
It is 'Hylas and the Water Nymphs'^ — ^the water is covered with 
water-lilies and the girls' heads above the water suggest larger water- 
lilies, somehow. They are beautiful, so is Hylas, so is the green water 
shaded with green trees — it is a beautiful picture — I forget the legend. 
Then there's one other that impressed me so much — I can't remember 
the man's name ^ but I should think he's young and new. I think it 

* Mr. Stuart M. Samuel, M.P. 
« By J. W. Watcrhousc, R.A. » Byam Shaw. 


From a nvattr'Colom- drawing in the pcsseisiw o/yofm Riley, Esq. 

Kate Greenaway 

is called * Love's Baubles/ A boy goes along, his hair stuck full of 
butterflies and carrying a basket of fruits, followed by a train of girls 
trying to get them ; some apples are dropped which the girls are 
picking up. The colour LOVELY — strong Rossetti ; it's colour to its 
highest pitch, and to my mind it is splendid. There's a girl in front 
smiling — in a green dress lined with purple shot silk ; she has red 
hair. Her dress is so beautifully painted. The ground is covered 
with daisies. I shall go on Monday and look again. There — it's all 

Kate Greenaway to Miss Violet Dickinson 

29 April 1897. 

I am reading George Moore's Modern Painting and I feel my 
cheeks burn. And I long, oh I long — if only I could do it, to write 
a reply. The answers come surging up while I read — so much of it 
seems to me a distorted criticism of distorted things. But sometimes 
he writes well. I am intensely interested in it, though of course I 
look on Art from an entirely diflferent view. I think it sacrilege to 
compare Velasquez and Whistler, and when he says the world never 
repeats itself, we have had a Velasquez now we'll have a funny 
Whistler. Would the world say that if there was a remote chance 
even of another? Wouldn't we all say we'll take the Velasquez, 
please ? — Not that I don't like Whistler — I do — but it is nonsense 
putting him at that level. It seems to have aroused feelings in its 
readers for there are various pencil notes on the margins beginning 

Kate Greenaway to Ruskin 

May 27, 1897. 

I often think, just for the pleasure of thinking, that a little door 
leads out of the garden wall into a real old flowering garden, full of 
deep shades and deep colours. Did you always plan out delightful 
places just close and unexpected, when you were very young ? I did. 
My bedroom window used to look out over red roofs and chimney-pots, 
and I made steps up to a lovely garden up there with nasturtiums 
growing and brilliant flowers so near to the sky. There were some old 
houses joined ours at the side, and I made a secret door into long 
lines of old rooms, all so delightful, leading into an old garden. 
I imagined it so often that I knew its look so well ; it got to be very 
real. And now I'd like somehow to express all this in painting, 
especially my love of old gardens with that richness of colour and 
depth of shade. 


From a loater-coiour dratving h, the possession of Mrs, Arthur Severn. 

British Masters at the Guildhall Art Gallery 

Kate Green aw ay to Mr. Ponsonby 

I went the other day to the Guildhall ^ — there are beautiful things 
there, but not so interesting to me as the last exhibition — that seemed 
to me the finest collection I had ever seen. 

I can't think why, but the Rossettis never seem to go with other 
pictures, while the Millais' tower above all things. They have the 
Drummer-boy* there, just wonderful, and the early one of the Royalist • 
— but put in the narrow passage, where you can't see it. 

Kate Grbenaway to Ruskin 

JtUy 14, 1897. 

There was a Millais — three Millais* — *The Huguenots,' *The 
Gambler's Wife,' and ' The Blind Girl.' Every time I see any of the 
early Millais' I like them more and more, if possible. * The Hugue- 
nots ' is so wonderful, isn't it ? Her face ! it seems to move and quiver 
as you look at it — it is a divine picture. I do only wish he had not 
made the colour in the girl's sleeves yellow, or that yellow. Then the 
wall and the campanulas and nasturtiums — her hands and his ! — 

I know you do not always like Tadema, but there is one here I 
think you would like — both the painting and the subject, but very 
likely you have seen it. I never have before. It is called 'The 
Women of Amphissa.' Do you know it ? Some women have gone on 
a pilgrimage and have strayed into an enemy's city and are taken care 
of and given food by the women of the city. Thcfiod is so wonderful. 
There is some honey in the comb, and cucumbers and figs and bread. 
There are two fair women who are marvels of painting. 

Then there's a Holman Hunt — *The Boys Singing on May 
Morning,'^ — but the reflections are so exaggerated it cuts it up too 
much. But well do I love the early one, * The Two Gentlemen of 
Verona.' I have often seen this before and I love it. It really is so 
beautiful to see such pictures. 

Then there's a Lewis — such painting, such colour ! What a 
wonderful collection of men they were ! 

And what will this generation who run them down have to show ? 
For them, nothing that I can see at present. There are two Turners, 

^ An exhibition of the works of painters who had flourished during Queen Victoria's 
reign, held at the Guildhall Art Gallery. 
« * An Idyll, 1745/ 
* 'The Proscribed Royalist.' 
** * May Morning on Magdalen Tower,' Oxford. 


Kate Greenaway 

but by the time I got to those I was feeling too tired to stand. I fear 
I shan't go again for I think it closes to-day. 

There, it is all pictures this time, but I feel so much better for 
seeing them. I always do, if I can see a beautiful thing. 

Katb Grbbnaway to Lady Maria Ponsonby 

July 26, 1897. 

An American and his wife came to-day and bought some drawings, 
and the lady asked me how much they were a dozen ! 

Her American visitors were perhaps scarcely to be blamed ; 
for Miss Greenaway, alike innocent of the simple strategy of the 
prudent salesman and incapable of the subtle skill of the accom- 
plished dealer, would make no attempt to ^ nurse ' her drawings. If 
she were asked by an intending purchaser what she had for disposal, 
she would bring out everything she had, partly in order that her 
client might make the freest choice, partly in a spirit of pure but 
impolitic self-abnegation. And when her friends remonstrated with 
her on the imprudence of the proceeding, she would laugh and 
reply gaily that she evidently was not cut out for a business 
woman. No wonder that American collector thought that the 
matter might be approached on a ' wholesale ' footing. 

Katb Greenaway to Ruskin 

July 28, 1897. 

Did I tell you I was now reading a very fascinating book about 
gardens, only it is conducted on more scientific principles than my 
gardening and would take much longer. Mine consists in putting 
something into the ground. When once there it has to see after 
itself, and can't come up to see after its root, or go to another spot for 
change of air — perseverance does it ! There's an alstrcemeria that 
has had quite a desperate struggle for three or four years when it's 
never grown up — never flowered — But this year there has been a 
victory, a great bush of lovely orange flowers. 

I saw such a great bee in the garden the other day — as large as the 
Coniston ones that kick so furiously. I thought of the Coniston bees 
when I saw him, and then — of the Coniston Moor, and the Coniston 
Lake, and the Coniston Mountains. Ah, well, I shall come and see 
it again some time — won't you like to see me again, some time ? 


The New English Art Club 

^ • 

On a Letter to Miss Violet Dickinton. 

Kate Grebnaway to Miss Violet Dickinson 

Nov, 12, 1897. 

I've now finished St, Ives. I don't like the other man's ending — 
— I don't think it is up to Stevenson's usual mark. There are too 
many adventures — too many hairbreadth escapes — it wants some spaces 
of repose. I don't like all dangers, it becomes painful to me to read. 
You no sooner begin to breathe, feeling he is safe, than there he is 
again worse than before. 

Kate Greenaway to Ruskin 

Nov, 18, 1897. 

Oh, I went to the New English Art Club yesterday — such produc- 
tions ! I just think it all mere pretence. They are to my mind 
mostly all very ugly rough sketches, and they think nothing of leaving 

out the head or body of any one if that isn't where they want it I'd 

like you to see some of the clouds — solid — absolutely — and to think of 
Turner ! The place was thronged with students which is sad — but 
I believe it won't be for long. I was told the Times said the move- 
ment began to be popular and so was bad and dangerous. I believe 
it will soon all crumble away, for there isn't anything in it except 
sketches ; none of the good artists would exhibit — the tide will 


Kate Greenaway 

2^ %n^*uMt 



Kats Gubnaway tq Ruskin 

AW. 14, 1897. 
Whit do you think I hive been drawing to-diy i I got so interetted 
it hu made me very tited. I Rm doing a bind of little child ingelt 
eich carrying a lily coming along a hilltop against i green (summer) 
sunset sky. May-trees are in flower, and they are (one or two of the 
angels) gathering daisies. The lilies are heavenly lilies, to it docin'i 
matter their being out at the same time as the May. I hive not yet 
finished the starry sky, but I was constrained to do the ingels. 

This chapter may fitly be brought to a close by the following 
handsome defence of'^Ruskin, inspired by sl conversation with Miss 
Violet Dicicinson, and written twelve months before the last 

Kate Grbenaway to Miss Violet Dickinson 

Nfti. t, igg6. 

I have been thinking very much about what you said, of the way 
people talk against him in Venice^I hope you will try a little not to 
ijuite believe it ill. For believe me it is sure not to be ill true, and 
even if he his been very tnaccunte the world owes him so much that 
one may well and justly (I think] forget his faults. 

The world // very ungrateful like all nature is, and takes all the 
good it can get and then flings the giver of it away. Thit is our way 
and it is a cruel one. And there's another reason also — ■ reason that 


From a luater -colour drawing in t hi possession of Stuart M. Samuel^ £jf>t M^P- 

Defence of Ruskin 

once I used not to believe in — but I do now^ and that is that so many 
of the second-rate authors and artists seem to have a most bitter jealousy 
of the great ones. It is very curious to me but they do. They love 
to find a fault. Look how delighted they were to think Carlyle was 
unkind to Mrs. Carlyle, while really I suppose he never was. When 
Mr. du Maurier died the other day such unfair notices of both his 
books and drawings ! — I feel red-hot angry at lots of the things said 
about the big ones, and we ought to be so grateful to them instead for 
what they make the world for us. Nearly always the criticisms are 
from the lesser man on the great one. How should he know ? — If he 
did he would be the great one, but he isn't and can't be, and nothing 
shows more how little and below he is. More than that, he can't 
reverence and venerate those wonderful souls who shower down so 
freely for everybody the greatness that is in them. I feel I can say all 
this to you for you are a feeling soul, and I know you'll go with me. 
Not that I mean for one moment that it is right not to be accurate, 
and I know in Mr. Ruskin's case he is too ready to believe all he 
hears, but I think it should be forgiven — that the beautiful things he 
tells you — ^and the new life of Art you enter into— compensate. 

Never shall I forget what I felt in reading Fors Clavigera for the 
first time, and it was the first book of his I had ever read. I longed 
for each evening to come that I might lose myself in that new wonder- 
ful world. 


I 898- I 90 I 


Besides a visit to Lady Jeune, at whose house Kate again had 
the pleasure of meeting the Princess Christian and other royal 
ladies, the year 1898 was marked by only one event of any 
moment. This was the third exhibition of her pictures at the 
Fine Art Society's Gallery, and she approached the ordeal with 
considerable misgivings. There was no need for apprehension, 
however. Out of one hundred and twenty-seven little pictures 
eloquent of her unbounded industry, sixty-six found purchasers, 
the total receipts reaching the sum of j^ 1,024 • ^^^-^ 

But the results did not satisfy her. After the opening day 
she wrote to Miss Dickinson : — 

Feb, 22, 1898. 

I'm so glad it is over. I hate having to talk to crowds of strangers, 
and then it is a very anxious time after working for it so long. At 

^ The net profit to Miss Greenaway was ^^^45. The most important pictures sold 
were *■ Little Girl with Tea Rose ' (3 5 guineas), * Going to School ' (35 guineas), * Betty ' 
(35 guineas), * Girl in Pink and Black — Grey MufF' (60 guineas), * Little Girl in Scarlet 
Coat and Tippet ' (35 guineas), * A Girl in Hat and Feathers ' (45 guineas), * Thoughts 
of the Sea' (35 guineas), 'Two Girls in a Garden' (35 guineas), 'Lilies * (35 guineas), 
and * Baby Boy in Blue Coat and Tippet ' (35 guineas). 


39,FltOCNAL. * 




On ■ Letter to Miu Violet Dickin* 

Kate Greenaway 

the Fine Art they say it will be successful ; that always, if they sell as 
much as that on the Private View day, that it is all right — but I have 
very great doubts if it is so, and the large Pencil and Chalk drawings 
I fear do not take at all. The little ones sell, and the dressed-up 
babies. I've felt depressed about it and I hardly ever feel that unless 
there is a cause. It was so tiresome — the day people go to buy was 
such a horrid day of rain and sleet, and now to-day snow. Then 
there was coming another Exhibition of old mezzo-tints with a private 
view which they said would be so good for me as so many would be 
there, but now they have had an offer and sold the whole collection, 
so that won't come off. They are going to have the Martian drawings ^ 
and others instead. 

Then they had a beautiful sage Flag to float outside, but when it 
came home they had only put one * e ' into my name and it had to go 
back to be altered. 

And three weeks later, in reply to ' kind inquiries ' after the 
exhibition by her friend, she wrote in no better spirits : — 

13 Mmrek 1898. 

No, the drawings are not nearly all sold. If more of the higher- 
priced ones were gone instead of the others it would not be so bad, 
but it takes a great number at only a few pounds each to make up any- 
thing like enough to pay. 

The Fine Art people say the East wind has kept people from going 
out and they have had so few people in and out in consequence — but I 
feel far more that my sort of drawing is not the drawing that is liked 
just now, and also that I am getting to be a thing of the past, though 
I have not arrived at those venerable years they seem to think fit to 
endow me with. 

Whether or not she had good reason to complain of the fickle- 
ness of the picture-buying public, certain it is that those who 
bought her pictures then have had no reason to repent of their 
bargains. ' 

In this year Miss Greenaway completed the book-plate she had 
undertaken to draw in colours for Mr. Stuart M. Samuel's little 
daughter Vera ; and so conscientious was she that although her 
price for it was only six pounds, she was occupied upon it on and 
off for two and a half years \ and when her client sent her a much 
larger sum than was actually due, she insisted on returning to 
him the over-payment, while * feeling it so very kind.' The pains 

^ By George da Maurier. 

From the photogra'vure in colours in the possession of Stuart M, Samuel^ Esq.,, M.P, 

From rhe photogravure in colours in the possession oj" Stuart M. Samuel, Esq.^ M.P. 

Mr. and Mrs. Stuart M. Samuel 

she took were extraordinary — ^the child, the design, the introduction 
of the wreath of roses with the hovering bees (from Mr. Samuel's 
own book -emblem), and the lettering, all received the utmost 
consideration. The lettering proved too much for her, as on the 
occasion when Ruskin so roundly trounced her ; so she agreed to 
have the words designed for her by a professional letter-draughts- 
man for her to copy in her drawing. When it was finished she 
took the keenest interest in the reproduction, and she was highly 
flattered that Mr. Samuel decided to discard the ^three-colour 
process ' and adopt the more precious but vastly more expensive 
photogravure on copper. In this case each separate impression is 
printed from a plate inked a la poupie — that is to say, the artist- 
printer inks the plate with the various coloured inks carefiiUv 
matched to the tones of the drawing ^ so that, when the plate is 
passed through the press only one copy can be obtained from each 
printing, and the plate has to be inkea again. A few impressions, 
therefore — say ten, or thereabouts — cost as much as the original 
drawing, but the result justifies the expenditure. The reproduc- 
tion here given is not from the drawing itself, but is a three-colour 
reproduction from the printed impression which has often been 
mistaken for the original. The artist was delighted, and wrote — 
* How much I should like to do a book like this, but I suppose it 
is fearfully expensive. ... It is really beautifully done.' In this 
letter she goes on to revert to her ill-health, and succeeding letters, 
in a like strain, led her friends to suspect the true cause of what 
she thought was ^influenza.' Thus, on the eve of staying at 
Cromer with Mr. and Mrs. Samuel, she writes — on the 15th of 
May 1900, after a recurrence of illness — ^ Please forgive my not 
coming. I know you would have been a Vision in the Loveliest 
of CoK>urs. I should so much like to come to tea again later on 
when I'm not so busy, and see you and some more First Editions.* 
And again : ^ I hope you are quite well again. I am not yet. 
I suppose I've had influenza. I never felt so ill before.' Then 
follows a series of letters full of hopes of future meeting, of 
acknowledgments of commissions given, and of gratitude for 
kindnesses received. The kindnesses, as was usual with her, she 
sought to return by the gift of little drawings to her hosts and 
their children, for although she loved attentions she never liked 
to feel the weight of indebtedness. She used to be a little nervous 
in making these presentations. On one occasion, when she made 
such a gift to one of the present writers and she was asked to 


Kate Greenaway 

sign it, she wrote in her flurry ^ Kate Spielmann * — and there the 
quaint signature remains (rather smudged out by her impulsive 
forefinger) at the present moment. 

As in the record of the immediately preceding years, so in that 
of 1898 we have to depend on letters, written m the main to 
Ruskin, for any intimate impression of her life and character. 
They abound in allusions to her hopes, fears, ambitions, enthusiasms, 
and perplexities, ethical and religious, her preferences in art and 
literature, her generous appreciation of the gifts of others and her 
modest estimate of her own. 

Kate Greenaway to Ruskin 

Jan. 12, 189S. 

I went yesterday afternoon to see the Millais' at the R.A. and I 
think them more wonderful than ever. 

It is splendid the impression of beauty and power — as you first step 
into the rooms. Do you know well *The Boyhood of Sir Walter 
Raleigh ' ? I think that boy's face is the most beautiful I have ever 
seen — it makes me cry to look at it. Its expression is so intensely 
wonderful — so is ' The Stowaway.* — But it is going from one master- 
piece to another. Still there are some which do not appeal to me as 
much as others. The divine * Ophelia ' is there as divine as ever. 
People are making up to it. I have thought it the most wonderful 
picture ever since I first saw it. 

Then there is the girl's face in ' Yes ! * — ^full of the most beautiful 
feeling — like the Huguenot girl. — How he painted those children ! — 
Angels of Beauty. He is really a marvel 

1 should like to have a sort of little packing case made that I 
could put drawings into and send backwards and forwards for you to 
see — sometimes — only perhaps you wouldn't like them. If you would 
it would be rather nice — a very narrow flat box always ready. 

I fear the exhibition won't be in the least successful ; there seems 
to me to be very few pictures sell now — or a person is popular just for 
a little time. And there's so much fad over art — if you like the new 
things they say you are modern. I say Art isn't modern : new or old 
in a way. It is like summer is summer — spicy is spicy, and Art is Art, 
for as long as the world is — isn't that true ? However, they have woke 
up to the * Ophelia' so I forgive them a good deal. 

But I can't help feeling boiling over with rage when I read the criti- 
cisms in some of the papers — so utterly ignorant ; and then people who 
don't know are guided by this. I daresay you will say, * But what do 
the people who don't know matter ? ' — ^They don't — but it is depressing. 


Modern Art 

Kate Grebnaway to Ruskin 

Jmt. 26, 1898. 

I wish people would care about what I do more now. This 
Millais Exhibition has rather woke them up. They got to think 
Leighton was a poor feeble being and Millais nowhere before the 
New Arty but I'm rather amused to hear the different talk now.^And 
then Poynter and Richmond, to my great joy, have been going for 
them in their addresses. For a great many years now I have thought 
the * Ophelia ' the greatest picture of modern times and I still think so. 
They have unfortunately hung the children being saved from the fire 
next to it, which was not a wise choice, as the red of the fire one is, 
of course, very trying to those nearest it — but oh, they ARE all 

Jm. 27. 

I have been to see the Rossettis again to-day for a little change, 
for I was too tired for anything. I like the small water-colours more 
and more* The colours are so wonderful. I feel I do such weak 
things and think strong ones, and it is dreadfully tiresome. I do want 
to do something nice — beautiful — ^like I feel — like I see in my mind, and 
there I am trammelled by technical shortcomings. I will never begin 
a lot of things together again because then you can't do new ideas 
or try different ways of work, and I always could only do one thing 
at once. I live in the one thing and think about it, and it's like a 
real thing or place for the time. Even now, the moment I'm doing a 
new drawing the morning rushes by — I'm so happy, so interested, I 
only feel the tiredness when I can't go on because it is too late or too 

Kate Grbenaway to Ruskin 

Feb. 2, 1898. 

I am reading some pretty stories translated from the French of 
Madame Darmesteter, but I fancy some of the historical ones are 
rendered a great deal more ir^historical, and your sympathy is expected 
from a point of view that you can't (or I can't) give, if I think it out. 
But I am much more puzzled the longer I live as to what is right and 
wrong. I don't mean for myself. The rules I knew as a child are still 
good for me — I still think those right. But it's other people's minds 
seem to me so strangely mixed up till I feel, why don't people settle 

1 She here refers to Millais ' * RescnV; of which Ruskin had written in 1855 : *''^^ 
only grtat picture exhibited this year ; but this is vrry great. The immortal element is 
in it to the full.' 


Kate Greenaway 

it once for all, and do what they call right and not what they call 
wrong ? 

It seems to me to be so unjust, often, for there to be two laws 
about a thing. I often ask people but I never learn^-every one seems 
vague and says — * Oh well, if you do right you have your own self- 
respect ' ; but it seems to me more than that. It is right to do one 
thing — ^wrong to do another ; at least, isn't this true ? 

Kate Grbbnaway to Ruskin 

Mttrck 29, 1S9S. 

I long to be at work painting May-trees. There are such beauties 
on the Heath only they are black instead of grey, or else they twist 
about beautifully. May-trees have such sharp curves, don't they, 
grow at right angles, in a way, instead of curves. I like it so much. 
Do you know them in Hatfield Park ? They are the greyest, oldest 
trees I have ever seen. 

May-trees don't grow about that way at Witley. The May is all 
in the hedges, not growing on the commons in single trees. Yet it 
must be very much the same sort of sandy soil that is on the Heath, 
and Witley is nearly all uncultivated land. 

I always look with envy at the May-tree Bume-Jones painted in 
* Merlin and Vivien ' : — it is so wonderful. 

In the following letter she describes her visit to Lady Jeune 
at Arlington Manor, Newbury : — 

Kate Grebnaway to Ruskin 

Afril 14, 1S98. 

I feel rather low to leave Lady Jeune, she is so dear and kind. I 
can't tell you how kind she is to every one, and Madeline Stanley, the 
daughter, is so beautiful and so kind and so very unselfish. She played 
Lady Teazle and she was a dream of loveliness, and, I thought, acted 
it in so refined a manner. I felt considerably out of it all but they 
were all very nice people and I did them pictures — I hope gave them 

a little pleasure in compensation for their kindness to me I 

went off for two or three little quiet walks by myself on the Common ; 
it was a fascination complete — a great joy. It made me wild with 
delight to see it all — the yellow of the gorse and the brilliant green 
and orange of the mosses, and the deep blue of the sky. Also, I 
grieve to say it, and you will be shocked to think it of me, but those 
three lovely sirens were rather depressing— one felt so different, one 


From a tuater-cokur dratving in the pouetiion of Mru Arthur Severn.^ 

Miss Madeline Stanley 

was of no account. There was Miss Millard ; — ^black curly hair and 
deep, deep grey eyes, and sweet pink cheeks. There was Lady 
Dorothy FitzClarence with red-gold hair and eyes like — was it Viola ? 
(' her eyes are green as glass, and so are mine ') ;— eyes the greenest 
(or greyest) of things blue, and bluest of things grey — cheeks the 
colour of a pink pale China rose, red lips and creamy complexion. 
Then came that beautiful, that dearest siren of them all — Madeline 
Stanley — who is so dear one could only rejoice in her altogether. 
But think of poor me ! I used to say to Lady Jeune, ' Oh, let 
me come away with you, away from these sirens, the air is full of 

No wonder the poor young men thirsted for the stage-manager's 
blood, who took the lion's share of the beautiful sirens. They vowed 
such vengeance I told them / thought it very unfair, but they assured 
me their injuries were great. 

In another letter on the same occasion she writes, ^ I am a 
crow amongst beautiful birds.' 

Kate Grbenaway to Lady Maria Ponsonby 

April 19, 1898. 

It was lovely at Newbury — there is a common there just edging 
the grounds tenanted by sweet little woolly white lambs — such pictures, 
with wide-open anemones and blackthorn bushes. It made me so very 
happy to walk about there and look at things. 

There was acting going on and the house was filled with young 
men and women, so I felt considerably out of it. But they were really 
most of them very nice to me, and the three girls were dreams of beauty. 
Madeline Stanley is so beautiful and not modern ; she is so very dear 
and kind — I think her perfection. 

Katb Grbenaway to Rvskin 

AprUlOf 1898. 

To-morrow is the New Gallery Private View, but there won't be 
anything to look at like the Rossettis. How I should like to live 
always in a room with two or three Rossettis on the walls. You live 
in a great many places at once, don't you, when you have beautiful 
pictures hanging on your walls ? You lift up your eyes and you are 
away in a new land in a moment. 

I should find it hard to choose if I were allowed the choice of 
twelve pictures. I would have had one of the Briar Rose pictures, 


Kate Greenaway 

/ iMsto : ' The Maidena asleep ac the Loom ' — a imall Rouctti, / iaea, 
but which I am not quite certain, — perhaps the meeting of Dante and 
Beatrice in Paradise, (Whenever I write Paradise I thint of you. 
I remember writing it ' Paridise ' one day to you, and you were rather 
cross and wrote back ' I'd write Paradise with an •! if I were you.' 
I JiJ feel humiliated !) 

Then what else ! The beautiful Luini Lady with the jasmine 
wreath and green gauzy veil and the divine smile.' It is a great deal 
to make any one smiling a smile that you can never get tired of. 

I'm reading the Diary of Grant Duff; it is so very interesting and 
full of such funny pictures. I was rather interested last night, after I 
had been writing about the twelve pictures, to find he talks of choosing 
twelve, but his choices are not mine — and I've not chosen my twelve, 
and besides perhaps my twelve are far away where I shall never see 
them — I have seen so few. 

Katb GaiEHAWAY TO RusciM 

Mofij, 1S98. 

I wish I did not have to make any money. I would like to work 

very hard but in a different way so that I was more free to do what 

I liked, and it is so difficult now I am no longer at all the fashion. I 

say fashion, for that is the right word, that is 

all it is to a great many people. 

Katb Grebnawav to RtfSKiN 

Isn't it curious how one can like good 
things so much and not do them ? I do love 
one figure or a number put into a little space 
with just room for what they are doing. I 
don't think figures ever look well with large 
spaces of background. I know how fascinated 
I was by that one of Rossetti's — the Princess 
of Sibra drawing the lot. For one thing, my 
mind runs to ornament or decoration in a 
way, though it has to be natural forms, like 
foxgloves or vine-leaves. I can't like a flower 
On ■ Letter to Rnikin. or leaf I invent, though I often love those I 

' Appirentl;, Luioi'i ' St. Cutberinc.' 

French and ' International ' Art 

•^ l^f^ U)- . 

Katk Gkeinaway to Ruscin 

jM/f 14, 189I. 

I went to lee the Guildhall pictures yesterday afteraoon, but I 
can't help it, I like the English ones best. They are splendidly done 
but— they don't take me. I do like Bastien-Lepage and Millet and 
Meissonier — I don't think I've got lympathy with French art, it it 
somehow too artificial. Perhaps fm very, very wrong but — I can't 
help it, I feel so. I went one day to the Gallery of Internationil Art. 
Some things I liked but the greater number I felt wrong and not 
clever, and some I felt loathsome. That is a strong word but I feel 
it. Shannon does fine portraits. I think his pictures of girls are 
perfect, I like them so very much. 

Two days later she wrote to Miss Dickinson : ' I went to see 
the pictures at the International. Some are so funny. I laughed 
till the tears reall;^ came. It is art gone mad.' 

233 y> 

Kate Greenaway 

Kate Greenaway to Ruskin 

Newhavin Court, Cromie, 
Atigust 26, 1898. 

There is a very, very pretty girl sitting opposite doing French. 
She is occasionally extremely impertinent to me — I tell her / am going 
to tell you. She says she would like to see you, and she likes your face 
and she sends you her love. This is Miss Maud Locker-Lampson, 
looking so lovely in a purple and green dress like a wild hyacinth. 
You would so love all these nice dear children — they are so nice — so 
good-looking. And there is something else you would like — the loveliest 
tiny grey kitten, such a sweet. 

Kate Greenaway to Ruskin 

Se^, I, 1898. 

Isn't it a pity more people do not love things ? — ^The beautiful 
things of the world are so little to so many ; they go for drives where 
all they look upon is so lovely and they care not one bit, but long to 
get home again as quickly as possible. 

I can't tell why it is people are always trying to convert me. They 
seem to look upon me as always such a ready subject, and really there 
is not a more fixed belief than I possess — I have thought the same way 
ever since I have had the power to think at all. How is it possible 
that I should change ? I know I shall not. If there is a God who 
made all the wonderful things in this world, surely He would require 
some worship of those also, but I can't help thinking of a power so 
much greater than all that altogether — a power that the best in us reaches 
to only. 

Kate Greenaway to Rusrin 

SipU 16, 1898. 

I'm reading a book that makes me so unhappy — I hate it — I totally 
disapprove of it, yet I want to read it to the end to know what it is 
like. I feel all the time how wretched I should be if I had a mind 
like the man who wrote this book. How curious it is the way people 
think — the difference of how they think — how curious they are in the 
narrowness of their — shall I say — vision? And there goes on the 
wonderful world all the time, with its wonders hidden to, and uncared 
for by, so many. How is it that I have got to think the caring for 
Nature and Art of all kinds a real religion ? I never can, never shall 
see it is more religious to sit in a hot church trying to listen to a 
commonplace sermon than looking at a beautiful sky, or the waves 


coming in, and feeling that longing to be good and exultation in the 
beauty of things. 

How dreadful that sordid idea of a God is with the mind getting 
more and more morbid and frightened. Why was the world made 
then ? and everything so wonderful and beautiful ? 

She recounts how somebody, who had felt it a duty to attempt 
to convert her, had said, ^^^You can't sit on that soia for five 
minutes without feeling steeped in sin "; and I said, ^^I often sit 
on it, and I don't feel like that ; if I did I should try hard not to 
do wrong things." And so I would ! ' 

Kate Grbbnaway to Ruskin 

Oct, 26, 1898. 

How curiously days come back to you, or rather, live for ever 
in your life — never go out of it, as if the impression was so great it 
could never go away again. I could tell you so many such. One is 
so often present I think I must tell that one now. Go and stand in a 
shady lane — ^at least, a wide country road — ^with high hedges, and wide 
grassy places at the sides. The hedges are all hawthorns blossoming ; 
in the grass grow great patches of speedwell, stitchwort, and daisies. 
You look through gates into fields full of buttercups, and the whole of 
it is filled with sunlight. For I said it was shady only because the 
hedges were high. Now do you see my little picture, and me a little 
dark girl in a pink frock and hat, looking about at things a good deal, 
and thoughts filled up with such wonderful things — everything seeming 
wonderful, and life to go on for ever just as it was. What a beautiful 
long time a day was ! Filled with time— 

Kat£ Grebnawat to Ruskin 

7 Nov, 1898. 

I am reading a strange French Play. I should like to see it 
acted — Cyrano de Bergerac, I feel it would be very taking when 

It is so strange all the great things are a sacrifice. The thing that 
appeals supremely seems to me always that. Yet how sad it should 
be, for to the one it means desolation. It is a strange world this. 
How queer it all is, isn't it ? living at all — and our motives and things 
matter, and liking beautiful things, and all the while really not know- 
ing anything about the Vital Part of it — the Before and the After. 


Kate Greenaway 

Katb Greenaway to Ruskin 

Ncn. 1898. 

Oh, SO foggy again ! No seeing to paint or draw. I hope it will 
soon leave off this, but it always is so about Lord Mayor's day. It is 
nearly always an accompaniment, isn't it ? I saw the people going 
home the other day with those long papers of the Show. Do you 
remember them ? How fascinating they used to be to me ! how 
wonderful they seemed ! Did you like them ? I have only seen 
Lord Mayor's Show once. I would like to see it again. I hope they 
will never give it up. I do so wish we had a few more processions, 
and I'd like to revive all the old May -days. Jacks -in -the -Green, 
and May-poles — ^then Morris dancers, all of them. I 've seen Morris 
dancers once only but they looked so nice with their sticks and 

I wish I had something very nice to send you on this foggy day. 
I want to go to the Fine Art this afternoon to see Alfred East's draw- 
ings. One will have to look at them by gas-light for the fog is so 

Kate Greenaway to Ruskin 

Dcr. 27, 1898. 

It really is fatal to me to have to do anything in a hurry, I must 
have a quiet time. I can do just as much work or more if only I 
don't feel I've got to make haste — a sort of Dutch temperament — no, it 
is really nervousness — comes in. Look at dear Rover ! There's a calm 
life — nothing at all to bother about except to try to get more of the 
things he likes. 

Such, presumably^ as two chops instead of the one which, every 
day of his spoiled life, Kate had grilled for him. And he might 
eat the cakes and hncy biscuits at tea-time if he chose to 
commandeer them. The inevitable result of such high living 
was occasional illness and veterinary attentions. 

The following are extracts from undated letters of this year: — 

Kate Greenaway to Ruskin 

Dear Rover is, I am sorry to say, getting fatter again, after all the 
trouble we have taken to make him thin. He is evidently meant to 
be stout. One thing now, he never will go alone. We always have to 
be with him. Once he would go for long walks by himself. They 
are quite different, like people, when once you get to know them. 


From a tvater-coiour draioing in the possessicn oflV. F'lnck^ Etq. 

On Heroes and Hero- Worship 

Katz Greenawat to RutKiN 

I have jaat heard from Joxnie that jou spent your day in the 
drawing-room yesterday — so you would ice 
the Burne-Jones' and the Hunts. How 
slowly the Hunts have dawned on me — but 
it is ■ comfort titj Have Jaamtd, isn't itiHf 
Ah, you say, WHAT a benighted being, 
what a little Heathen ! to have been so 

Kati Griinaway to Rvsxin 

What a fuss there has been about Sir Ro^a i» Innnrtmii amb iu* 
Herbert Kitchener !— I like it.— He must ^ " Ba»i«oii>. 

have felt it was very nice for people to be o„ , l^^ ,„ r^.^j^, 
so glad. I like a great deal made of people 
who do things. 

In the satnc strain she had written of another hero to Miss 
Dickinson the year before : — 

I'm very much impressed by Lord Roberts' Indian book. I met 
him many years ago at a children's party at Lady Jeune's. She told 
us we were rival attractions and the little Princes and Princesses 
couldn't make up their minds which of us they wanted to see most. 

He was hrave — so were the others ; they were a brave and noble lot. 
It seems too wonderful as you read lo think how people can be like that, 
going to certain death — to the suffering of anguish. It feels to me too 
much to take — too much to accept — but it's beautiful. 

In 1899 Kate Grcenaway devoted herself seriously to the 
painting of portraits in oil colours, and her letters of this year arc 
full of the difficulties which beset her and her indomitable deter- 
mination to master the mysteries of the new medium. Again 
and again we find her bewailing — ' I wish I could paint and not do 
smooth sticky things ' — ' I can draw a little but I can't paint ' — 
' Isn't it ttx) bad — too bad — how much I can admire and — how 
llttli I can do.* 

In March she said good-bye with a heavy heart to her friends 
the Tennysons, on Lord Tennyson's departure to take up the 
Governorship of South Australia. They were destin" ' ver to 
meet again. 


Kate Greenaway 

Kate Grbbnaway to Ruscin 

Jan. 3, 1899. 

I'm not doing drawings that at all interest me just now. They are 
just single figures of children which I always spoil by the backgrounds. 
I never can put a background into a painting of a single figure, while 
in a drawing there isn't the least difficulty. Perhaps I don't trouble 
about the reality in the drawing. I put things just where I want them, 
not, possibly, as they ought to go. And that seems to me the difficulty 
of full-length portraits. It is all quite easy with just a head or halt 
length. It is funny the background should be the difficulty. The 
most modem way is to have a highly done-out background and a figure 
lost in mist, but I don't see this. So I can't take refuge there. 

Miss Greenaway's difficulty with backgrounds is that shared 
by every artist, more or less. G. F. Watts, R.A., used to quote 
Rubens, who said that ^ the man who can paint a background can 
paint a portrait.' 

Kate Grbenaway to Ruskim 

Jmt, II, 1S99. 

What dismal books people do write ! I have just been reading a 
story by Hardy called The Woodlanders^ so. spoilt by coarseness and 
unnaturalness. I say spoilt by this, for there are parts of it so beautiful 
— all the descriptions of the country and the cider-making — it is all so 
well described you really feel there. The end of the book is simply 
Hateful. I hated to think his mind could make it end so. Did you 
ever read any of his books ? so many people now seem to me to make 
things unnatural — it is a curious thing to think so, but Fm sure it is that 
they do — and the natural is so much greater. They like things odd — 

She never missed an opportunity of seeing Burne-Jones's 
pictures. Here are two of a hundred instances : — 

Katb Grebnaway to Ruskin 

Jan, 19, 1899. 

I am going to-day to see the Burne-Jones drawings at the Burlington 
Club. His drawings are so beautiful. I do wish you could see the 
large painting of King Arthur at Avalon. How you would like to have 
it to look at for a time ! I should like to have it for a week hung 
opposite to me that I might know it all — every bit. 


Sir E. Burne- Jones's Drawings 

How tired one would get of some paintings if one gazed upon them 
for a week — as tired as one often gets of one's own. I fear it is con- 
ceited but there are a very few drawings — little ones of my own — that 
I do not get tired of, though I do of most of them. 

I went to see the Burne-Jones drawings yesterday. They are very 
lovely. There are two or three I would like to have, but indeed there 
is not one I would not, but there are two or three I would love to 
possess — a procession with such lovely young girls in it. The studies 

On a Letter to Rutkin. 

for the pictures are so beautiful — the chalk and pencil drawings. He 
draws such beautiful faces ; and I like his later drawings often better 
than his earlier ones. He certainly had not gone off, except perhaps 
in colour — ^but that was a phase. He had grown to like colder colour, 
brown and cold grey, which I did not always like, preferring the 
beautiful colouring of the ^ Chant d'Amour ' and * Venus Vinctriz.' But 
then, I like colour so much. Well, the world is Coloured, so are 
people. I see colour higher than things uncoloured for that reason. 

Kate Grbbnaway to Ruskin 

Ftb. 21, 1899. 

I told you, didn't I, that I was going to try if I could do portraits of 
children ? I don't at all like it. I don't feel near strong enough for 


Kate Greenaway 

the strain of it. I know what the children are like— quite unaccustomed 
to sitting still, and then to have to get a real likeness ! I prefer the 
little girls and boys that live in that nice land, that come as you call 
them, fair or dark, in green ribbons or blue. I like making cowslip 
fields grow and apple-trees bloom at a moment's notice. This is what 
it is, you see, to have gone through life with an enchanted land ever 
beside you — ^yet how much it has been ! 

Kate Greenaway to Ruskin 

March 8, 1899. 

The summer exhibitions now are never interesting. The poor artists 
can't afford to paint good pictures. No one will buy them. I think 
it is very sad and such a pity — the sort of thing that's taken now — 
cheap, of course, that comes first — then comes the picture if you can 
call it so (I often don't). The colours are daubed on in great smears 
and dashes. The drawing has gone — anywhere but to the picture — ^at a 
distance it looks like something but close you can't see anything. 
Now / hate pictures that don't look right close. Sometimes the colour 
of them is good, powerful, and strong, but — so was Millais, and with all 
else, it ought to be added, the more and more do I grow to think 
Millais wonderful. To me there is no question he is greatest. People 
quarrel with me because I think him greater than Watts, but, is it con- 
ceited to say ? — / know he is. And Watts himself says so also. Ah ! 
if I could paint like Millais ! then, then you'd see a proud person 

Kate Greenaway to Ruskin 

March 17, 1899. 

My little model has taken to say such funny things lately. She 
said yesterday some one had an illness that went in at his head and 
came out at his feet. She also was talking of a little sister being ill 
and I said, * Perhaps she is cutting a tooth.' *• Oh no,' she said, * she 

always cuts her teeth with bronchitis.' It inspires me so 

much to see good paintings though I don't think you can ever tell 
how they are done, or at least I can't. I often think that when I am 
painting myself no one would guess I did that, or that, the look is all. 
You may do a thing quite another way from the elaborate theory. 

Kate Greenaway to Ruskin 

March 23, 1899. 

I make such awful beings in oil — ^you would be amused, but — I'm 
going on till I emerge — I'm going to emerge, I'm so interested but SO 


THE MUFF (unfinished). 
From the experimental oil painting in tAe possession ofyohn Greenaway^ Esq^ 

Attempts at Oil Painting 

STUPID. The paint all runs away, and the big brushes ! But think 
of the fine point I've passed my life with ! I knew where I was going 
then. Why, trying to draw with a pencil with ns feint is nothing to it. 
But, as I said, I'm going to emerge — in the end— triumphant — ^? ? ? ? — 
but thacappeira to bca considerable longwayoEyct, . . . I should like 
to paint Spring one day. I see it all. . . . If I could Pain/ « Oi^ you 
see, I could do it,- — iien't jeu set 1 or do you smile i You would if you 
saw the Painting in Oil, I sit and laugh at it. My little model says — 

* Oh, I don't think it's ao bad ' — and tells other people I don't get into a 
mess. Upon which they say, ' T^t'j add.' I was rather touched by her 
assumption of my triumphant progress. You like her for it — don't you ? 
Ah, well, I'm going to do lovely little girls and boys by and by. I am. 

On the same subject she wrote to Miss Diclcinson on April 24 : 

* I am more cnthnulcd than ever by the oil paint, which begins 
to go where I want it instead of where it wants to go itself.* 

At the Exhibition of the Home Art Industries at the Albert 
Hall she has an amusing contretemps. 

Mof 9, 1S99, 
Then the Princess Louise came and I was introduced to her. She 
is so pretty and looks so young. I actually remembered to curtsey 
(which I always forget), and I was just congratulating myself on having 
behaved properly, when all my money rolled out of my purse on to 
the ground. The Princess laughed and picked it up. Wasn't it nice 
of her f Something always happens to me. 

Kate Greenaway 

Kate Greenaway to Ruscin 

Maj 17, 1S99. 

I am improving now in my oil-painting. I begin to make the flesh 
look like flesh and no longer white and chalky. I like doing it so 
much and if only the models would not talk so much ! — But how they 
talk ! and if you stop them talking they gape and make such ugly faces ! 
Some one was telling me that Sir Joshua Reynolds, to stop his sitters' 
talking, had a glass put up so that they could see him working. 
I think of adopting that plan. You can't think what you are doing 
while you have to listen. I can't see why they want to talk so and 
never think. How funny it would be to have a mind that never liked 
to be alone with its own thoughts — very dreadful I should find it. 
I get to feel very tired and miserable if I can't have any time to be 
quiet in. 

Kate Greenaway to Ruskin 

hLy 31, 1899. 

You can't think how funny it is — but finding the power of oil-painting 
now, my curious mind is wishing to see, and seeing, all subjects large ; 
it seems as if my long-ago and ever-constant wish — to paint a life-size 
hedge — might now be realised. What a divine thing to do ! A life- 
sized girl in the front and then the large foxgloves and wild roses, and 
strawberries on the ground. I should be lost in my picture. I should 
have to have a stool that moved up and carried me about over my 
picture. All the same I should not wonder if I ^0 do a life-size thing ! 
Perhaps I have hopes of the capacity of oil paint that won't be realised, 
but it is nice to get a medium to work in that does what you want 
more at once. I don't like small oil things half as much as water- 
colours — but I do lose the go of things in water-colours. 

Kate Greenaway to Ruskin 

Jmne 7, 1S99. 

I went to the Tate Gallery the other afternoon, and somehow I 
didn't like it — much. It is a beautiful Gallery, but somehow tomb-like 
— and my dearest-loved of English pictures, Millais' *• Ophelia,' doesn't 
look its best there. Now I feel this picture ought to have a gallery 
that suits it exactly ! but perhaps some other time I may go and like 
it ever so much. As it was, I grieve to say, the entrance was what I 
liked best, going out and coming in. There's the beautiful river and 
the boats and the opposite shore of wharves and buildings, and I felt 
how nice it must be at Venice to come out and find the sea — I do like 



the iM^-ora large river to every town. But this view of ihe Thuncj 
fascinated roe — like seeing the river from the drawing-room it the 
Speaker's house. I am almost getting to think that an oil-picture does 
undergo a change a little while after it is painted — I mean twenty or 
forty years — and then if it is a real good one settles itself into remaining 
a wonderful thing for ever. For some of the pictures of forty years 
■go get ■ curious look. I'm thinking of Egg, and that time— or are they 
not quite good enough ? For the Leslies remain charming. 

7»« 11, 1899. 

The air is scented with the hay — everywhere — and the wilderness of 
the garden has ^llen before a very hard-working young gardener. I loved 
it all overgrown, but the gardener told me when he saw it ie tsuld net 
came again, he felt so deprtssed. Queer, isn't it, how differently people 
feel ? It is very fresh and flowery at this moment. The rain has 
brought out the flowers. There are roses, white peonies, purple irises, 
large herbaceous poppies, lupins, syringa, marigolds, foiglovei, del- 
phiniums, and campanulas, and day lilies, and many others. It is the 
garden's best moment, and it is summery and not that frightful heat 
which is too much for me. Do get Elizaieth and her German 
Garden. It [suggests] Alfred Austin's garden books but it is amusing 
and pretty, . , . 

I am depressed often when I can't do this new painting as I like. 
I take a rush on and think every difficulty is over — when I ^nd myself 
suddenly plunged deeper than ever in things that won't come right — 
iut they've gat to — ihey don't know that, but it is so — I'm not going to 
be beaten. 1 can see loveliness surely. My lingers have got 10 learn 
to do what my eyes wish — they will have to — so there it is. / see 
such colour and I can't lind a paint to make it. In water-colour I 

Kate Greenaway 

could get any colour I could see, but I can't in oils. I get something 
pretty like ; then in a day or two some underneath colour has worked 
up and horrid colour is the result. However, I'm beginning to find 
out many things, so I hope as I go on working I may get to do it all 

It poured with rain here yesterday. I hope this may make the 
gardener less depressed when he contemplates our weeds. Poor weeds 
— fine tall fresh green thistles and docks spreading out their leaves in 
lovely curves. I'm sorry for all the things that are not much wanted 
on this earth. — ^And long ago, I loved docks ; we used to play with the 
seeds and pretend it was tea. We used to have a tea-shop and weigh 
it out and sell it for tea. Perhaps docks do not mean that for any one 
else in the world — like the purple mallow and the seeds I used to call 
cheeses, sweet little flat green things, do you know ? 

Kate Greenaway to Ruskin 

July 25, 1899. 

Dear Rover's pride has had a fall. There are two swans have 
come to live on the White Stone pond, and Rover goes and swims 
there on his way home. Johnny said he could see the people round 
the pond laughing, and when he got up to it there was Rover swim- 
ming about as if the pond belonged to him, while the swans who 
thought it belonged to them were fluttering their wings and craning 
their necks. Rover still remained unconcerned and imperturbable, 
when one of the swans took hold of his tail and pulled it ! This did 
vanquish Rover, who left the pond hurriedly amidst the derisive 
laughter of the bystanders. 

He has some nice friendly swans on the other pond who swim up 
and down with him. I suppose he thought all swans were alike. 

I am curious to know if he goes in to-day Dear Rover stood 

firm and did go in. Johnny saw him quite unconcerned swimming 
about with the swans flapping about at the back. Now don't you 
think this was much to his credit ? I only hope they won't peck him ! 

Kate Greenaway to Mrs. Edmund Evans 

Dear Mrs. Evans — You don't know how I feel that I don't get 
time to write — you must think it horrid — but I have so many things 
to do because I can't afford to pay for them being done, and my little 
leisure bit of time is taken up writing to Mr. Ruskin every week — for 
now he can't go out, or often do things that mean so much to him. 
Then I am trying to do children's portraits life-size — in oils ; this 



From a tvater-coleur drawing in the pouetsion of Harry J. Veitch^ Eiq, 

Children's Taste 

means giving up a lot of time to practising, a year possibly, and 
making no money. Then I've the house to see to and my dresses 
and needlework and trying to write my life — as you will, I think, see 
there is a good deal more than a day's work in each day. I want to 
come and see you very much but I fear I can't before the autumn — 
then I shall try. I have wanted rather to go somewhere quite by 
myself to the sea to try to get on with my book. I might come near 
you, if not to stay with you. I hope you like Ventnor and that it 
suits Mr. Evans. 

Kate Greenaway to Ruscin 

Sept. 1899. 

Do you know, I've had a great deal of pleasure out of oak branches 
and acorns — what a lovely green they are ! One day walking by the 
sea, I saw a little bit of lovely emerald green on the sand. When I 
looked to see what it was there were two 
acorns ! shining and looking so brilliant. 
I could not have thought a small thing 
could show so much colour. 

I go on liking things more and more, 
seeing them more and more beautiful. 
Don't you think it is a great possession to 
be able to get so much joy out of things 
that are always there to give it, and do 
not change ? What a great pity my hands 
are not clever enough to do what my 
mind and eyes see, but there it is ! 

Kate Greenaway to Ruskin 

Nov, 7, 1899. 

There are not any very good children's 
books about just now that I have seen. 
The rage for copying mine seems over, 
so I suppose some one will soon step to 
the front with something new. Children 
often don't care a bit about the books 
people think they will, and I think they 
often like grown-up books — at any rate I 

did. From the Kenny Meadows pictures to Shakespeare I learnt all 
the plays when I was very young indeed. It is curious how much 
pictures can tell you — like the plays without words. I suppose I 
asked a good deal about them and was told, and read little bits 


Kate Greenaway 

anyhow. I never remember the time when I didn't know what each 
play was about. They were my Sunday evening's amusement, and 
another book called Tie Illuminated Magazine'^ that had all sorts of 
things in it. Some I specially liked, called *The Recreations of Mr. 
Zig-Zag the Elder.' Perhaps you know the magazine. And then 
there were accounts of the old London Churches and old places of 
interest : the Lollards' Tower, St. John's Gate, St. Bartholomew's 
Church. No, I believe these were in a book called T^ Family 
Magazine. I believe one of our three cherished large volumes was 
that name, — the other two the Illuminated. How much prettier 
those old illustrations are than the modern engraved photograph. I 
hate the modern book and magazine illustration. But there is a BUT 
— the illustrations of Hugh Thomson and Anning Bell, also Byam 
Shaw, are quite beautiful and quite different. 

Kate Greenaway to Ruskin 

Nov, 26, 1899. 

I am rather liking red and blue just now. I suppose it is the 
winter makes all faint colours look so pale. I like the strong warm 
colours of scarlet — it is nice to do. I always like painting fur, which 
I think is rather curious, for I don't like painting hair and never do it 
well. Rembrandt painted hair so beautifully — the portrait of Saskia 
with the fair hair hanging down was so beautifully done ; I did envy 
that. Then Correggio also — do you remember Cupid's curls ? so 
lovely ; and some of Sir Joshua's, the Angels' heads — their hair is 
done so wonderfully. Fair hair is more difficult to paint than dark ; 
I spoil mine by getting the darks too dark in it, so losing the fair 
colour of it, though I do think it is easier in oils than in water-colours. 

Kate Greenaway to Ruskin 

Dec. 5, 1899. 

There is going to be an exhibition for children at the Fine Art — 
the Private View is on Saturday — but I think it is very likely the 
children won't appreciate it. I often notice that they don't at all 
care for what grown-up people think they will. For one thing, they 
like something that excites their imagination — a very real thing mixed 
up with a great unreality like Blue Beard. How I used to be thrilled 
by * Sister Ann, Sister Ann,' done by the servants in the agonised 
voice of Blue Beard's wife, and I could hardly breathe when the 

^ First volume published in 1843, edited by Douglas Jerrold, and written and illus- 
trated by some of the most brilliant authors and artists of the day. 



From a vjater- colour drtnoing in the poiseuion of Mn. Levy. 

The Last Letter to Ruskin 


On 3 Letter lo Ruikin. 

Stains would not come off the key. — Those wonderful little books 
they used to sell in coloured covers, a penny and a halfpenny each — 
they were condensed and dramatic. They are spoilt now by their 

1 never cared so much for Jaei tie Giant-KUltr, or Jack end 
the Biamtalk, or Tam Thumb, as I did for Tht Sietping Beauty 
in the fVaod, Cinderella, and Beauty and the Beail. 1 did not 
like Puis in Been as well either. Of course they were all deeply 
fascinating, but the three pretty ones I liked best. It would be 
curious to do a book of them from one's remembrance of them in 
one's early thoughts. I know my Blue Beard people were not dressed 
as Turks then. 

Dec. I J, 1899. 

It has been so dark lately, I'm quite afraid to do my things. For 
a dark day docs so much harm — just spoils everything. I'm getting 
quite used to oil now, but I still make out things too much, especially 
the lines round the eyelids. It is a pity, but I always have that 
tendency and this dark weather makes it worse. I hope I may get 
out of it in time — but I may never. 

Dear Rover has hurt his foot and is quite sulky because Johnny 
has gone out this evening. He expects us always to be at home now. 
You will say to yourself, why does she write such silly letters to me 
just now i and they are. It is my mind has got too much in it — more 
than it can hold. Now you will say, 'Oh, I don't think her mind has 

Kate Greenaway 

got anything in it at all/ What do you think it is doing ? — ^Trying to 
write a play in the midst of all this bother ! Now I never could think 
out a plot to write a story about, and here, at this most inopportune 
moment, a play has got into my mind and insists on being written, and 
goes on and on and develops in a quite curious manner. And there 
am I with no time to spare and it toiil be written down — isn't that 
funny ? Of course it won't be good or of any use — only I must do it ! 

On Saturday, the 20th January 1900, the following entry 
which says so little, but meant so much to Kate Greenaway, 
appears in her diary — ^Mr. Ruskin died to-day at 2.30 in the 
afternoon from influenza/ 

For him there could be no regret that the ^ black archway- 
gate had. swung open to the glittering fields of freedom,* but 
for those left behind it would be hard to say by how much 
the world was the poorer. It was not characteristic of her to 
say much when she felt most deeply. 

It was Mr. Stuart Samuel who broke the news to her. 
^ On Sunday,' she wrote to Mrs. Evans, ' some people came in 
and said they had seen from the papers he was dead. I didn't 
believe it, but the next morning I got letters from Brantwood.' 

Then on the following day she wrote in her trouble : — 

Kate Grbbnaway to Mr. M. H. Spiblmann 

22 yaituary 1900. 

I'm dreadfully sorry about Mr. Ruskin's death. It was a great shock. 
I only heard from Mrs. Severn on Saturday morning ; she said 
then he had influenza, but they did not think of any danger. I've 
heard again to-day — they only knew there was any fear of it being 
fatal between 10 and 1 1 Saturday morning. He died at half-past 2, 
entirely painlessly all through. I feel it very much, for he was a 
great friend — and there is no one else like him. 

Soon she came round to talk it over and open her heart to this 
correspondent, who had known Ruskin, too, and loved him well. 
And it will be observed that up to his death, never in her 
letters to Ruskin did she write a word about her own ill-health, 
lest she should distress one for whom she had so affectionate and 
unselfish a friendship. 

Miss Greenaway was now invited by the Roval Commission 
to contribute as a British artist to the Water-Colour and Black- 




' The April Baby's Book of Tunes ' 

and-White of the Paris Exhibition of 1900, when it was hoped 
that she would repeat her success of eleven years before. She 
had written to Ruskin that she was ^ too busy to take any trouble 
over it,' and to a friend to whom she paia the compliment of 
coming for occasional counsel, she wrote as follows, after due 
deliberation :— 

Kate Greenaway to Mr. M. H. Spielmann 

I have decided not to send to the Paris Exhibition. I have 
nothing good enough and I don't know who has my things — I can't 
think of anything I would like to send. I feel pencil drawings look 
so very pale when they get placed with strong coloured things. Don't 
you think it better not to send unless you send your best ? There 
was no time to do anything, and I did not want to leave the oil work. 

To her question there could be only one answer, and the 
artist was unrepresented at Paris. 

The state of her health was now giving serious anxiety 
to her friends. She certainly had undertaken and was able to 
carry to completion the illustrations to The April BabyU Book of 
TuneSy by the author of Elizabeth and her German Garden^ which 
was published towards the end of the year, but signs of foiling 
power were only too evident. 

The April Baby illustrations, which were reproduced by 
chromo-lithography in place of Mr. Evans's wood-engraving, to 
which admirers of her work had become accustomed, though 
charming enough and in harmony with the spirit of the book, 
are inferior to Mr. Evans's interpretations, and add not much to 
her reputation. A curious fact connected with them is recorded 
in the following letter received by us from the delightful and 
exhilarating author : — 

In answer to your letter I can only tell you that I did not, 
unfortunately, know Miss Kate Greenaway personally, and that while 
she was illustrating the April Babfs Book of Tunes we only occasionally 
wrote to each other about it. I felt quite sure that her pictures would 
be charming and did not like to bother her with letters full of my own 
crude ideas. It was odd that, though she had never seen the babies 
or their photographs, her pictures were so much like what the babies 
were at that time that I have often been asked whether she had sketched 
them from life. 

Her letters were exceedingly kind, and one of the April Baby's most 

249 32 

Kate Greenaway 

precious possessions is a copy she sent her of Marigold Garden with a 
little pen-and-ink figure on the fly-leaf drawn specially for her. She 
wrote me that she had been ill for a long time and had not been able 
to work at my illustrations, and that they had all been crowded into a 
few weeks at the end of the time given her by the publishers. She 
apparently thought they had sufl^ered from this, but I think most people 
will agree that they are as charming as anything she ever did. 
Naturally I was extremely pleased to have the weaknesses of my story 
hidden behind such a pretty string of daintiness. So peculiarly simple 
and kind were her letters that even a stranger like myself who only 
knew her through them felt, when she died, that there was one sweet 
nature the less in the world. — Believe me, yours very truly, 

The Author op ' Elizabeth and her German Garden.' 

That she now rather shrank from undertaking work of this 
kind we have already seen from the letter written to Mr. M. H. 
Spielmann, who, as a friend of some years* standing, asked her 
if she would be disposed to illustrate one of his wife's stories 
which were appearing in LittU Folks^ and were afterwards 
published in book form. In the event, the book, which con- 
tains brilliant drawings by several leading black-and-white artists 
of the day, was not lacking in two from the pencil of Kate 

At the same time her letters are sadly eloquent of her failing 
health : — 

Kate Greenaway to Mrs. M. H. Spielmann 

II Jiui. 1901. 

It is so long since I have seen you — so long since I have been. It 
has not been my fault. I have not been well enough. I seem to have 
been ill all the year. I had a long illness all the autumn which I am not 
yet recovered from — and then colds so bad they have been illnesses. 

I have seen no one hardly and done so little work. I'm so 

sorry when I don't work. For the time so soon goes and I always 
have so much I want to do, and just now there are so many beautiful 

pictures to go and see I hope you will believe that though 

I have not been to see you I have often thought of you and wished 
to see you. 

Raskin's birthday was on the 8th of February. On the first 
anniversary of it a year after his death, Kate wrote to Mrs. 
Severn : — 


From a nhured chtUk drawing in the possewon of tht Hon, Gerald Ponsmby, 

Kate Greenaway's Illness 


7 February 1901. 

My dearest Joanie — To-morrow is a sad day again. How I always 
wish I had done so much, much more. And I should have if life had 
not been so difficult to me of late years. ... 

If it would get warmer I could get out ; then I should get stronger. 
As it is I take everything I can. This is the little programme : 
medicine, 9 times a day ; beef tea, 8 times ; port wine, champagne, 
brandy and soda, eggs and milk. I'm all day at it. Can I do more ? 
Am I not a victim ? 

My dearest love to you. Your loving Katie. 


A few days later she writes to Mrs. Spielmann : — 

... I am really, I think, getting much better now, and when 
I have been away I hope I may return to my usual self. I have never 
been well enough to go to see you though I have often wished to. 
Since this time last year there has only been one month (June) vnthout 
the doctor coming. I have felt it so trying being ill so long. 

Yet in spite of her illness it must not be supposed that Kate's 
desire for industry ever flagged for a moment. She was full of 
schemes for books — not merely projected schemes, but plans fully 
matured, first sketches made, and pages fully ^ set-out.* There 
was a book of ' sonnets ' of her own — (she called them sonnets, 
though not all of them were in sonnet form) — plaintive, dreamy, 
and frequently a little morbid ; and the water-colour drawings to 
these are occasionally quite or almost complete. The water-colour 
sketch called ^Dead,* here reproduced, is one of these. Then 
there was a new Blake^s Songs of Innocence^ to be published at a 
shilling net, each song with at least one drawing ; this was so fully 
worked out that for certain of the designs several sketches were 
made. No fewer than twenty-two sketches were designed for a 
volume of Nursery Rhymes j there are fourteen to Baby*s Debut ; 
and twelve and four respectively to Hans Christian Andersen's 
Snow ^een and ffliat the Moon Saw. And, finally, J Book of 
Girls was to be illustrated with six of her daintiest pictures. A 
brave programme, surely, with sketches made, ready to be carried 
into execution ; but publishers were doubtful, their enterprise 
declined, and offers were so little generous, that the schemes were 
not pursued. 

Several friends sought to remove the discouragement under 


Kate Greenaway 

which Kate Greenaway was now labouring, in order to open up 
new vistas of activity and success in other walks than those she had 
trodden hitherto : not merely to salve her wounded amour propre 
but to spare her the natural worry incident to the diminution of her 
earning powers. For some time she had herself schemed a great 
dressmaking business in her own name, with herself as designer ; 
but it never got beyond the talking stage, and that mainly with 
her sister Fanny — ^Mrs. Dadd. Then she had the idea of modelling 
bas-reliefs in gesso for decorative purposes ; but that also came to 
nothing. For her heart was in her drawing and painting, and she 
welcomed cordially a suggestion that the Editor of the Aiagaxine 
of Art should write an article on ' The Later Work of Kate Green- 
away,' partly in order to draw public attention to her oil-painting, 
but mainly to bring forward once more her name as an active 
art-worker, for she was firmly persuaded that she was well-nigh 
forgotten — * forgotten,* the bitterest word in all the vocabulary to 
one who has been a public fevourite and whose name has rung 
throughout the world. 

Then, in August of 1901, Miss Greenaway was offered the 
post of editor of a new Magazine for children at a handsome 
salary, but she refused it, not only because she felt her strength 
unequal to so exacting an undertaking, but also because she 
doubted whether she possessed the necessary qualifications. But 
sadly enough for the many who loved her the first of these reasons 
was all too cogent, for only three short months were to pass before 
^ finis * was to be written both to work and life. 

A fortnight before she had written to Mrs. Stuart Samuel from 
Cromer : — 

I've been very ill — acute muscular rheumatism — horribly painful. 
I am now, I hope, getting better. It has been so in my mind the wish 
to write to you. You were so kind, it felt ungrateful to disappear in 
silence. . . . — Your affectionate Kate Greenaway. 

And again, ten days before she passed away : ^ I should love a 
drive when I'm well enough. I will write and tell you how I get 
on ; then, if you will, take me one day. With my love.' 

But the end came, at 39, Frognal, on November 6th. 

The privacy she wished for in life was observed at her death ; 
only a few friends attended in the Chapel of the Cremation 
Society's Cemetery at Woking, on November 12th ; fewer still on 
the day following, when the casket was quietly interred at Hamp- 


Death of Kate Greenaway 

stead Cemetery. But the proofs were overwhelming that she was 
in a multitude of hearts on that day. 

At the news of her passing a chorus of eulogy and regret went 
up from the press. Writers and critics, English and American, 
French and German, vied with one another to do honour to the 
memory of one who had spent her life in spreading joy and beauty 
about her without the faintest taint of vulgarity, without the 
slightest hint of aught but what was pure and delicate, joyous and 
refined. Tender and respectful, admiring and grateful, saddened 
with the note of heartfelt sorrow, these tributes one and all bore 
witness to the beauty of her life and work. Of them all none 
touches a sweeter and a truer chord than the ferewell homage of 
her friend, Mr. Austin Dobson : ^ — 

K. G. 

Nov :VI : 1901 

Farewell, kind heart. And if there be 

In that unshored Immensity 

Child- Angels, they v\ ill welcome thee. 

Clean-souled, clear-eyed, unspoiled, discreet. 
Thou gav'st thy gifts to make Life sweet, — 
These shall be flowers about thy feet ! 

For a few years preceding her death Kate Greenaway had 
occupied herself much with trying to express her feelings in artless 
and simple verse. 

In 1896 we find her writing to Miss Dickinson with her 
customary pluck and energy : — 

Each night when I go to bed I read a little bit of Browning — they 
are so wonderful-^ach time I read one I like it better than ever. That 
fires me with ambition to try to write something, and I do try, and 
they won't come good ; isn't it hateful of them to be so poor and 
weak ? But I'm going to try more than ever, and Pm going to try 
other things too if only I can keep well. I do mean to try and do a 
little more in my life. I'm not content, for I have not yet expressed 
myself. It's such a queer feeling, that longing to express yourself and 
not finding a means or way — ^yet it goads you on and won't let you rest. 

* Published by Mr. Austin Dobson in his delightful article on Kate Greenaway in 
the Art Journal^ and written by him, on the 29th January 1902, in the Album of Mr. 
Ernest G. Brown, and here printed by consent of both gentlemen. 


Kate Greenaway 

The following sonnet, a characteristic and appropriate example, 
was written when she already felt the coldness of the advancing 
shadow, and it may be accepted as reflecting her own view of the 
Great Hereafter : — 

When I am dead, and all of you stand round 

And look upon me, my soul flown away 

Into a new existence — far from the Found 

Of this world's noise, and this world's night and day : 

No more the inexplicable soul in this strange mortal body. 
This world and it in severance eternal : 
No more my presence here shall it embody. 
No more shall take its place in time diurnal — beauteous land may I be wandering in 

While you stand gazing at what once was I ? 

Why, I may be to gold harps listening 

And pluckmg flowers of Immortality — 

Why, Heaven's blue skies may shine above my head 
While you stand there — and say that I am dead ! 

In the year following Kate Greenaway's death, a fourth Ex- 
hibition of her works was held at the Fine Art Society's Gallery* 
These were in no sense ^ the remaining works of an artist lately 
deceased,' as auctioneers' catalogues commonly have it, nor yet was 
it a memorial exhibition. It viras, like those of 1 891, 1894, and 
1898, the result of labour undertaken with the definite purpose of 
showing what she could accomplish, and of claiming once again the 
suffrages of the collector. The only difference — a difference that 
weighed upon every visitor to the Gallery — was that the hand 
which had produced them was now stiff and the gentle heart by 
which they were inspired had ceased to beat. 

The most important pictures sold were ' Little Girl in Purple,' 
' Little Girl in Blue and White,' * Visitors,' * Boy with Basket of 
Apples,' ^ Procession of Girls with Roses,' ^ Little Girl in Red 
Pelisse,' 'Procession of Girls with Flowers,' *The Doorway,* 
* Doubts,' 'Girl in Orange Dress (seated),' unfinished, 'Cottage 
with Children,' 'Girl seated by a Rose Tree,' 'Strawberries,* 
' Children passing through the Apple Trees,' ' Susan and Mary 
and Emily, with their sweet round mouths sing Ha ! ha ! ha,* 
and ' A Little Girl in Big Hat with Basket of Roses.' 

In a table case were also exhibited a selection from the illus- 
trated letters written by Kate to John Ruskin, from which many 
of the thumb-nail sketches reproduced in this book are taken. 


Kate Greenaway 

For the sake of those who have not enjoyed the privilege of 
seeing any of her original work it should be mentioned that in the 
Art Library of the Victoria and Albert Museum there arc ten 
of her water-colour drawings, among them illustrations to the 
Language of Flowers^ Little Ann^ and the Almanacks, while in 
the Picture Gallery at this time of writing hang ' P peeped in it,' 
an illustration for A Apple Pie^ one of the illustrations for A Day 
in a Child* s Life^ and ' Three Girls in White.' 

Although such a one as Kate Greenaway is scarcely likely to 
be forgotten, a movement was quickly set on foot by some of 
her friends in order to perpetuate her memory in some appropriately 
practical fashion, and a committee was formed ^ for the purpose of 
promoting a scheme which will secure a fitting memorial to the 
late Kate Greenaway, who filled so distinctive a place in the Art 
world, and whose charming treatment of child-life endeared her to 
every home in the Empire.' The committee consisted of Lady 
Dorothy Nevill (at whose house the meetings were held). Lady 
Maria Ponsonby, Lady Victoria Herbert, Lady Fremantle, Lady 
Jeune (Lady St. Helier), Mrs. Locker-Lampson, Miss Meresia 
Nevill, Mr. Arthur i Beckett, Sir William Agnew, Sir George 
Birdwood, Sir Caspar Purdon Clarke, Mr. Walter Crane, Mr. 
Harold Hartley, Mr. M. H. Spielmann, Sir Arthur Trendell 
(hon. secretary), Sir Thomas Wardle (chairman), and Sir Aston 
Webb, with Mr. Arthur L. Liberty as hon. treasurer. The 
amount of the subscriptions collected — to which Sir Squire Ban- 
croft largely added by his fine reading in St. James's Hall of 
The Christmas Carol — reached ^949, which when the expenses 
were deducted left the sum of ^779. It was decided to endow 
a cot in the Great Ormond Street Hospital for Children— a form 
of memorial which would assuredly have appealed most strongly 
to Kate Greenaway herself, supposing it' possible that so modest 
a person would have agreed to or authorised any memorial at all. 
In due course the purpose of the committee was carried into 
effect \ and a dedication plate, designed by Mrs. Liberty, is now 
afExed above a little bed. And when the little ones who lie sick 
in the hospital ward ask the meaning of the plate upon the wall 
they are told of one who in spite of much physical weakness and 
suffering devoted herself whole-heartedly to bringing happiness 
and delight into the lives of others, particularly of children. 



From a tvater-colour drawing in the posusiion of Henry Stiver j Esq. 



From the early days when Kate Greenaway submitted her crude 
verses to Mr. W. Marcus Ward and found little encourage- 
ment, down to the very end of her life, she spent no inconsider- 
able portion of her time in fluttering around the base of 
Parnassus. Competent critics, as we luve seen, expressed the 
opinion that there was poetic fancy and feeling in many of these 
early attempts. Four thick volumes of neatly written manuscript 
running to hundreds of pages testify to the industry with which 
Miss Greenaway followed what she says to her infinite regret 
proved to be a vain hope. It is not given to every genius to 
shine in two spheres. These curious volumes as they stand make 
tantalising reading. A hundred telling themes are gaily launched 
on a sea of words and all goes well, until we are disturbed by 
mixed metaphor, faulty rhyme, and defective rhythm, and only 
here and there do we nnd a poem which is sustained and carried 
on successfully to the end. 

The fact is, Kate Greenaway — so she told her sister to whom 
she would read her verses — regarded these efforts only as rough 
drafts from which she intended some day to select the best and 
put them into form. She herself considered them defective alike 
in rhyme, rhythm, and metre, and admitted that they needed 
rewriting, and she made fair copies into her MS. volumes only in 
order to preserve her ideas until she could find time to express 
herself adequately according to the rules of versification. Indeed 
she did not seem to regard any of them as finished. This should 
be borne in mind by the reader who would deny these efforts 
serious consideration, or who would admit them only on the 

257 33 

Kate Greenaway 

ground that no ^Life' of Kate Greenaway would be complete 
or truly reflective of the artist's work without some reference 
to an occupation which filled her mind during many years of 
her career. How far Miss Greenaway might ultimately have 
gone it is difficult to say ; but we cannot doubt that she possessed 
some of the qualities of a poet. Hers was a mind full of subtle 
and beautiful thoughts of a sweet and simple kind, struggling 
to give them lucid expression. 

Let us take for example the following lines in which the anti- 
climax is really cleverly managed : — 

It is so glorious just to say 

I loved him all at once — one day — 

A winter's day. Then came the spring 

And only deepened the thing. 
I think it deepen'd — I'm not sure 
If there was room to love you more. 

Then summer followed — and my love 

Took colour from the skies above. 
Then weeks — and months — and years there came. 
And I, welly loved on — just the same. 

Then, dear, stretch out your hands — and let me lie 

Within them as I slowly die, 
Then stoop your head to mine and give — 
Ah, not a KISS — or I should live. 

It must not be forgotten that, like most bright and happy and 
keenly sensitive natures, Miss Greenaway had many moments of 
melancholy, almost of morbidness, which she attributed to her being 
^a quarter Welsh.' On this element of national sadness she laid 
the responsibility of her passion for writing love-verses, of a 
character so yearning and despairing, that she almost found herself, 
with rdles inverted, playing the Beatrice to some unknown Dante. 
It pleased and soothed her to work out a poetic problem — to 
imagine herself appealing to some foolish heartless swain blind to 
her love and deaf to her appeal — and to feel her way as she 
developed the character and mind of the love-lorn lady. The case 
was not her own, and for that reason, no doubt, the experiment 
was the more alluring. She returned to it again and again, con- 
stantly from a diiFerent point ; and poem after poem is expressive 
of a passionate desire for a love which never came. Page after 
page is devoted to apostrophising the imaginary one who is some* 
where in the world, sometimes perhaps even seeking her — seeking 
but not finding. 



First, her heroine takes upon herself the blame for losing him 
— * You smiled and I turned me away ' j and then declares that 
the fault is his for hanging back, for — ^^man is a fool — such a 

Ah, cold, faint-hearted, go — I tell you go ! 

Dear God, to think I could have loved you so ! . . . 

His eyes were blind that he could not see 

As he turned away to the world from me . . . 

And his soul 
Sought out — a lower soul. 

... It may be 
One day God 

Will tell you that you missed 
The Higher Part. 
You grasped the grass 
Who might have held the flower. 
You took a stone 
Who might have won a heart. 

... He looks back 
Over the years 
Of the rift and the wrack — 

And the lover*s soul cries to her soul : — 

Oh, can you forgive me ? 

I know to my cost 
The Life that Fve missed. 

The Life that I've lost. 
Can you pardon this soul ? 

God bless you, dear, always and ever, 

God bless you and bless you I say. 
And I know you will pray for the coward. 

The fool who once threw you away. 
Soul, when the stars shine 
Think sometimes of this soul. 

Later on, he is not content with forgiveness, but is praying to 
be taken back. But it is too late, for 

You rejected — threw the gift away. 

And now bring tears and sorrowful complaint. 

I call you coward, playing at babies' play. 
The woman made no sound, or any plaint. 

But took her lot and kept her bitter tears 

In silence all alone and unbefriended — 
Now take her scorn for all the coming years. 

That is her answer, till her life is ended. 


Kate Greenaway 

Then in the verses entitled * The You that was not You ' 
she makes the discovery that — 

The You I loved was my creation — ^mine. 
Without a counterpart within yourself. 

I gave you thoughts and soul and heart 
Taken from Love's ideal. . . . 

And so the first dream ends and she brings her heroine to a 
saner mood, with the discovery that all these bitter experiences 
and disappointments have been sent by God to teach her that she 
has been pre-ordained to an anchorite's life of Art, for Art's sake. 
Then half regretful, half resigned, she carries on her character a 

A lonely soul, I am ever alone. 
If love ever comes it is quickly gone — 
Nothing abides and nothing stays. 

I think I have found it, but only to know 

How very soon it is all to go. 

The sunshine is followed by falling snow. 

There are sometimes moments when I see 
A sort of divinity in it for me. 
To keep me separate and alone ; 

To hold away and keep my heart 
All for my work, set aside and apart. 
As if I were vowed away to Art. 

And then there comes a happier moment when something 
breaks into her life to compensate and console her for her 
renunciations : — 

For the world had found a new and lovely voice 

To teach and train me in her secret ways, 
And I saw beauty in all things that are 

And knew that I was blest for all my days. 

Above the world now, above its good and ill, 

I ventured on a new and lovely life — 
Sesame ! had been said and I paned in. 

My soul and body no more waged a strife. 

Shall I not think you then, oh, best of all ? 

Shall I not call you Friend, and say — *tis He 
Who shook away the chaff and saveci the grain 

And gave the whole— God's Heaven— unto me > 


I • 


' Girl in hat with feather, hat trimmed with svvansdown and yellow ribbons.' 

Ftom a toater- colour dranuing in tAc possession cf Stuart Ad. Samuel^ ^'f-y M.,P^ 


The verses here quoted are fair examples of her powers and of 
her limitations, so far as it is fair to speak of limitations when the 
verses are avowedly but studies for the finished work, the uncut 
and unpolished stones. The expression of the ideas is consequently 
crude, but the ideas are clearly there and have at least become 
articulate. They are not mock heroics, but the half-spoken 
utterances of real passion, of the baulked, helpless, disillusioned 
woman of her creation, who is emerging into a philosophic and 
sufficiently satisfactory state of mind. And they are representative 
of by far the larger portion of her literary output. 

What Kate Greenaway might have accomplished had she 
devoted as much time to verses for children as in accumulating 
poetic material of an introspective nature, may be gathered from 
the pretty and dainty rhymes with which every one who is familiar 
with her books is well acquainted. It may be seen, too, from the 
following lines from 'The Getting Up of the King's Little 
Daughter' — in which she has many pretty ideas around which 
she wanders, grasping them fully from time to time. Here is a 
dainty couplet describing the little princess's bath : — 

Then she rises and fresh water 
Swallows up the King's small daughter ; 

and the conclusion — 

For her breakfast there is spread 

Freshest milk and whitest bread. 
Yellow butter, golden honey, 
The best there is for love or money. 

So, too, in ^ Girls in a Garden,' a prettily clothed thought here 
and there stands out deliciously : — 

The Roses red white fingers take 
And Lilies for their own sweet sake — 

is surely a little picture of which no one need to be ashamed. 
So too — 

By Hollyhocks they measure who 
Is grown the taller of the two ; 
and — 

The sky is laughing in white and blue — 

reveal to us the true Kate Greenaway of Under the Window 
and Language of FUnuerSy illustrating the sisterhood of her pencil 


Kate Greenaway 

and her pen. And again there is a touch of infantile delight 
in the artless little verse — 

Oh, what a silken stocking, 

And what a satin shoe ! 
I wish I was a little toe 

To live in there, I do. 

Is it too much to say that had Kate Greenaway given as much 
time and energy to such verses as these as she did to her more 
ambitious efforts, she might be acclaimed the Babies* laureate as 
unchallenged on her pinnacle as she is supreme as the Children's 
Artist ? 

From the melancholy of her imaginary heroine, and from the 
brightness of her joyous self when she appeals to her vast child- 
constituency, we may turn to the occasional depression which is 
mirrored in some of her late verses when she considers her 
own life and achievement. It is not to be supposed for a moment 
that Kate Greenaway was morbid naturally, but she was easily 
dejected, particularly when, as we have seen, she fell into despair 
on realising that the world had forgotten her and passed her by 
while her imitators were reaping the reward which her own genius 
and originality had sown. Had she fallen out of fashion merely 
she would not have complained ; it was the denseness of the 
public who willingly accepted the counterfeit for the genuine that 
hurt her. More than once she casts these feelings into rhyme : — 

Deserted, cast away, my work all done. 

Who was a star that shone a little while. 
But fallen now and all its brightness gone — 
A victim of this world's brief fickle smile. 
Poor fool and vain, grieve not for what is lost. 
Nor rend thy heart by counting up the cost. 

In spite of the mixed metaphor we must recognise a sincere 

thought sincerely expressed — no mere idle complaint, but a 

disappointment honestly and courageously borne. And she 

proceeds — 

We walk, we talk, we sing our song. 

Our little song upon this earth ; 
How soon we tread the road along. 
And look for death almost from birth. 

In point of fact, hopefulness was the note of her character ; 



and in spite of all disappointments, she was an optimist to the end. 
This note is struck again in the following lines : — 

Take aU my things from me~all my gold. 
My houses, and my lands, and all I hold — 

Even my beauty*s grace j 
Smite down my health, take all my joy, 
Fret all my life with great annoy. 

If thou wilt still look on my Face, 
If thou wilt still say — This is she 
Who shall be mine, immortally. 

In Heaven, on Earth, 
In night, in day, in months, in years, 
In joy, in sorrow — smiles and tears — 

In life — in Death ! 

Death was a &vourite motifs but Death regarded as Watts 
regarded it — not as a ^ skull and cross-bones idea like that of 
Holbein,' but as the gentle messenger, remorseless but not 
unkind — ^as the nurse who beckons to the children and puts them 
to bed. One set of verses, obviously marked out for revision, is 
entitled — 


God called you — and you left us. 

Heaven wanted you for its own. 
I guessed you were only waiting 

Till an Angel fetched you home. 

I knew you talked with Angels 

In the green and leafy wood. 
Some thought you strangely quiet. 

But I — I understood. 

For I saw your eyes looked into 

The things we could never see. 
And the sound of your voice had the wonder 

Of the distant sound of the sea. 

And all the dumb creatures knew it. 
And the flowers faded not in your hand. 

You walked this earth as a Spirit 
Who sojourned in alien land. 

Another, equally simple, is illustrated with the sketch for a 
water-colour drawing ' Dead,' here reproduced. For each of these 
poems, about fifteen in number, Kate Greenaway had made a 
drawing more or less complete, with the intention of issuing them 


Kate Greenaway 

in a v<Juine. The verses for which *Dead' was designed run 
as follows:- ^ 


Hands that no more colour bold 
Than the jasmine stars they fold 

In their clasping, sdll and tender — 
Can we doubt, who knew her ixying. 
She was worthy of the giving. 

This gift of Death that God did send her ? 

Ala% that we are left to sorrow 
Deeply for you on the morrow. 

We stand and envy you the peace 
As you lie to, still and blessed. 
With jrour grievings all redressed 

And your soul obtained release. 

A final example of her happier mood and we have done : — 


My Lady, as she goes her ways 

By street or garden, gives God praise 

For all His lovely sounds and sights, 

The sunny days» the quiet nights — 
The glories of a moonlit sky 
With stars all shining silently — 

The rose and red of setting sun. 

And children as th^ laugh and run. 
The flowering fields, the flowering trees, 
The strong winds or soft-blowing breeze. 

No evil thing comes ever nigh 

To hurt her sweet tranquillity. 

In conclusion, we would draw the reader's attention once 
more to the verses ' When I am Dead,* * which were written on 
the approach of death, perhaps when, in spite of the confidence 
based on friendly assurances, her instinct whispered to her that the 
end was not far off. In these circumstances the lines assume 
a more pathetic and a tenderer significance, and breathe the 
pilgrim spirit of Hope and Faith at the very threshold of the 
Valley of Death. 

^ See p. 254. 

' DEAD.' 

Sketch for an illustration to a poem iy Kate Gretnaway, From a tvato'-colourjirawiftg 

in the possession ofyokn Greenaway^ Esq, 



In order to judge of Kate Greenaway as an artist, and appraise 
her true place and position in British art, we must bear in 
mind not only what she did, but what she was. It must be 
remembered that she was a pioneer, an inventor, an innovator ; 
and that, although she painted no great pictures and challenged 
no comparison with those who labour in the more elevated 
planes of artistry, is sufficient to place her high upon the roll. 
Just as Blake is most highly valued for his illustration and 
Cruikshank and Goya for their etched plates, rather than for their 
pictures, so Kate Greenaway must be judged, not by the dignity 
of her materials, or by the area of her canvas, but by the originality 
of her genius, and by the strength and depth of the impression 
she has stamped on the mind and sentiment of the world. As 
Mr. Holman Hunt, Millais, and their associates invigorated the 
art of England by their foundation of the Pre-Raphaelite Brother- 
hood, so Kate Greenaway introduced a Pre-Raphaelite spirit 
into the art of the nursery. That is what Dr. Max Nordau, with 
curious perversion of judgment and lack of appreciation, denounced 
as * degeneracy ' ! — accusing her of creating * a false and degenerate 
race of children in art,' while at the worst she was but giving us a 
Midsummer Day's Dream in Modern England. For him Kate 
Greenaway, the healthy, sincere, laughter- loving artist, is a 
^ decadent ' such as vexes the soul of a Tolstoi. It is the result^ 
of course, of misapprehension — of a misunderstanding which has 
revolted few besides him. 

The outstanding merit of Kate Greenaway's work is its 
obvious freedom from affectation, its true and unadulterated 

265 34 

Kate Greenaway 

English character. What Dr. Nordau mistook for affectation is 
simply humour — a quaintness which is not less sincere and honest 
for being sometimes sufficiently self-(;onscious to make and enjoy 
and sustain the fun. Such grace of action, such invariable delicacy 
and perfect taste of her little pictures, belong only to a mind of 
the sweetest order — the spontaneity and style, only to an artist 
of the rarest instinct. Animated by a love of the world's beauty 
that was almost painful in its intensity, she was not satisfied to 
render merely what she saw ; she was compelled to colour it with 
fancy and imagination. She reveals this passion in a letter to 
Mr. Locker-Lampson : — 

Kate Greenaway to F. Locker-Lampson 

22 Wellington Esflanaok, 
LowuTorr, Tkunday, 

Dear Mr. Locker — We arc back again in clouds of mist — ^no more 
lovely sailing boats. Yesterday afternoon was as fine as we could wish 
it to be. We went all through the fishing village, and then there 
comes a common by the sea, covered with gorse. The little fishing 
houses are so quaint. I was savage, for I had not got my book in my 
pocket, so shall have to trust to memory to reproduce some of it. 

I never saw such children — picturesque in the extreme ; such 
funny little figures in big hats, the very children I dream of existing 
here in the flesh ; and lots of clothes hanging out to dry flapped about 
in the sun and made such backgrounds ! People laugh at me, I am so 
delighted and pleased with things, and say I see with rose-coloured 
spectacles. What do you think — is it not a beautiful world ? Some- 
times have I got a defective art faculty that few things are ugly to me ? 
Good-bye, K. Greenaway. 

The truth is, her poetic emotion and the imagination which 
so stirred the admiration of Ruskin and the rest, inspired her to 
express a somewhat fanciful vision of the flowers, and children, and 
life which she saw around her. She gave us not what she saw, but 
what she felt, even as she looked. Her subtle and tender observa- 
tion, one writer has declared, was corrected and modified by her 
own sense of love and beauty. Her instinctive feeling is, therefore, 
nobler than her sense of record ; it is big in ' conception ' and 
style, and is immeasurably more delightful than bare appreciation 
of fact. 

It is a touch of tragedy in Kate Greenaway's life, that she to 


The Artist 

whom the love of children was as the very breath of her life was 
never herself to be thrilled by that maternal love for the little ones 
she adored. Still ^her spirit was bright and pure, vivacious and 
alert,* so that she drew children with the grace of Stothard and the 
naturalness of Reynolds, investing them with all the purity and 
brightness that we find in her drawing and her colour. Although 
her cantata was simple, it was ever notable for its exquisite 
harmony and perfect instrumentation. 

Faults, no doubt, of a technical sort Kate Greenaway shows in 
many of her drawings, and, as we have seen, mannerisms at times 
betrayed her. She would exaggerate in her faces the pointed chin 
that was a charm of her model Gertie's face. She would draw 
eyes too far apart, as Ford Madox Brown came to do ; yet how 
exquisitely those eyes were drawn, and how admirably placed 
within their sockets ! perfect in accuracy of touch, and delightful 
in their beauty. The knees of her girls are sometimes too low 
down ; the draperies are often too little studied and lack grace of 
line ; her babies' feet are at times too large, and are carelessly 
drawn, or at least are rendered without sufficient appreciation 
of their form. A score of drawings substantiate every one of 
these charges — but what of that? The greatest artists have 
had their failings, cardinal in academic eyes, for the faults are all 
of technique. As Boughton exclaimed of his friend George du 
Maurier — ^I respect him for his merits, but I love him for his 
faults.' In Kate Greenaway's case her faults are forgotten, or at 
least forgiven, in presence of her refined line and feiry tinting, her 
profiles and full faces of tender loveliness, and her figures or 
daintiest grace. 

* English picture-books for children,' exclaims Dr. Muther,^ * are 
in these days the most beautiful in the world, and the marvellous fairy- 
tales and fireside stories of Randolph Caldecott and Kate Greenaway 
have made their way throughout the whole Continent. How well 
these English draughtsmen know the secret of combining truths with 
the most exquisite grace ! How touching are these pretty babies, how 
angelically innocent these little maidens — frank eyes, blue as the 
flowers of the periwinkle, gaze at you with no thought of being looked 
at in return. The naive astonishment of the little ones, their frightened 
mien, their earnest look absently fixed on the sky, the first tottering steps 
of a tiny child and the mobile grace of a school-girl, all are rendered 

* The History of Modem Painting, vol. iii. p. 137. 


Kate Greenaway 

in these prints with the most tender intimacy of feeling. And united 
with this there is a delicate and entirely modern sentiment for scenery, 
for the fascination of bare autumn landscapes robbed of their foliage, 
for sunbeams and the budding fragrance of spring. Everything 
is idyllic, poetic, and touched by a congenial breath of tender 

The appreciation of Kate Greenaway's work was universal. 
In France its reception was always enthusiastic, and the critics ex- 
pressed their delight with characteristic felicity. They recognised, 
said one,^ that until Kate Greenaway there had been no author 
and artist for the boy citizens whose trousers are alwa)rs too short, 
and for the girl citizens whose hands are always too red. They 
knew nothing about her personality, and even doubted whether 
her name was not a pseudonym ; but they welcomed in her the 
children*s artist par excellence^ who knew that the spirit, the 
intelligence, the soul of little ones are unlike those of adults, and 
who knew, too, by just how much they differed. At the end 
of a glowing tribute M. Arsine Alexandre spoke of her 
as having been naturalUie de Paris — ^alluding, of course, not to 
herself but to her work, — ^whereupon an important English news- 
paper mistranslated the expression ; and so arose the absurd report 
circulated after her death, that Kate Greenaway, who had never 
quitted the shores of England, had passed the later years of her 
life in Paris. 

From Paris, declared La Fie de Paris^ ' the graceftil mode of 
Greenawisme has gained the provinces, and from wealthy quarters 
has penetrated into the suburbs*;* and the Vienna Neue FreiePresse 
maintained that ^ Kate Greenaway has raised a lasting monument 
to herself in the reform of children's dress, for which we have 
to thank her.' But the Figaro and the Temps recognised her 
higher achievement. 'Kate Greenaway,' said the former, 'had 
une dme exquise. She translated childhood into a divine language 
— or perhaps, if you prefer it, she translated the divine mystery 
of childhood into a purely and exquisitely child- like tongue.' 
* Never,' said the latter, ' has a sweeter soul interpreted in^cy 

* The Journal des Dibau. 

^ So true is it that ' Greenawisme ' stands for a phase of art and dress, that in that enter- 
taining publication, the Almanac Hachette for 1904 (p. 329), under the heading ' L'Histoire 
du Costume des Enfants,* the * Coiffure Greeneway ^ [sic) takes its place in the series of 
woodcuts immediately preceding Ma jupe cloche fin du xix^ si^cle'j and many more 
examples might be adduced. 


The Artist 

and childhood with more felicity, and I know nothing so touch- 
ing in their naYvetd as the child-scenes that illustrate so many of 
the artist's books, the very first of which made her celebrated.* 
These are but specimens of the scores of tributes that filled the 
press of Europe and America at the time of Kate Greenaway's 
death, and are sufficient to prove the international appeal she made, 
triumphing over the differences of race, fashion, and custom which 
usually are an insuperable bar to universal appreciation. 

Original as she was in her view of art and in the execution of 
her ideas, Kate Greenaway was very impressionable and frequently 
suffered herself to be influenced by other artists. But that she was 
unconscious of the fact seems unquestionable, and that her own 
strong individuality saved her from anything that could be 
called imitation must be admitted. The nearest semblance to 
that plagiarism which she so heartily abhorred is to be found 
in the likeness borne by some of her landscapes to those 
of Mrs. AUingham. The circumstance, as already recounted, 
that the two ladies were cordial friends and went out sketching 
together, the younger student in landscape -drawing watching 
her companion's methods, is sufficient explanation of the like- 
ness. Miss Greenaway quickly recognised the peril ; and she 
must have realised that her drawings, so produced, lacked much 
of the spontaneity, the sparkle, and the mellowness of the work 
of Mrs. AUingham. Take, for example, the charming plate called 
' A Surrey Cottage.'^ The landscape is as thoroughly understood 
as the picturesque element of the design, with its well-drawn 
trees and deftly-rendered grass. The children form a pretty group ; 
but they are not a portion of the picture ; they are dropped into 
the design and clearly do not fit the setting into which they 
are so obviously placed. The artist herself has clearly felt the 
defect, and obviated it on other occasions. The love of red 
Surrey cottages, green fields, and groups of little children was 
common to both artists, and Kate's imitation is more apparent 
than real ; her renderings of them are honest and tender, full 
of sentiment, and of accurate, vigorous observation. She does 
not seem to have studied landscape for its breadth, or sought to 
read and transcribe the mighty message of poetry it holds for 
every whole-hearted worshipper. Rather did she seek for the 
passages of beauty and the pretty scenes which appealed to her, 
delighting in the sonnet, as it were, rather than in the epic. 

^ To consult the drawings mentioned see the Index of Illustrations. 


Kate Greenaway 

Her shortness of sight handicapped her sadly in this branch of 
art, and prevented her from seeing many facts of nature in a broad 
way J for example, while ' The Old Farm House * has great merits 
of breeziness, truth, and transparency of colour, with a sense of 
^ out-of-doorness ' not often so fteshly and easily obtained, the great 
tree at the back lacks substance, as well as shadow and mystery, 
for its branches are spread out like a fan, and do not seem, any of 
them, to grow towards the spectator. There is no such fault in 
' The Stick Fire * — a subject curiously recalling Fred Walker ; 
for here the landscape, although a little empty, is clearly studied 
from nature and set down with great reticence and intelligence. 
And what could be prettier than the pose of the two girls, big 
and little, on the left ? When she leaves realism and touches the 
landscapes and groups with her own inimitable convention. Miss 
Greenaway becomes truly herself and can be compared with none 
other. Glance, for instance, at ^The Bracken Gatherers.' It 
has the sense of style and ^bigness' which triumphs over any 
mannerism ; and the heads, especially that of the girl set sa well 
upon her neck, are so full of dignity that they may be considered 
a serious effort in art. 

She was undoubtedly influenced at times by Mrs. AUingham 
and Fred Walker, as well as by Ford Madox Brown (see ' Brother 
and Sister,' in which the little girl might almost have come from 
his pencil). We find traces, too, of Mr. G. D. Leslie, R.A. (in 
* Strawberries ' — a drawing not here reproduced), of Stothard (as 
in the masterly sketch for ' The May Dance ' with its fine sense 
of grace and movement, and its excellent spacing), of Downman 
(as in the portraits belonging to the Hon. Gerald Ponsonby), of 
Richard Doyle (as in the large drawing of 'The Elf Ring'), and 
sometimes we recognise echoes of Stacy Marks, of Mason, and 
of Calvert. But what does it all amount to ? Merely this, that 
when she wandered beyond the garden of that Greenaway- 
land which she had called into being, the artist was sometimes 
moved by the emotions with which she had been thrilled when 
in past years she gazed with enthusiasm at these men's work. 
The resemblance was in the main accidental j for every one 
of these painters, like herself, is characteristically and peculiarly 
English in his view of art as in his methods of execution. 

There are those who sneer at nationality in art. You can no 
more speak of English art, laughed Whistler, than you can speak 
of English mathematics. The analogy is entirely a false one. 


The Artist 

You can say with truth ^ English art ' as you can say ^ German 
music * ; for although art in its language is universal, in its 
expression it is national, or at least racial ; and it is the merit of 
a nation to express itself frankly in its art in its own natural way, 
and to despise the affectation of self-presentation in the terms and 
in the guise of foreign practice not native to itself. It is a matter 
of sincerity and, moreover, of good sense j for little respect is 
deserved or received by a man who affects to speak his language 
with a foreign accent. Kate Greenaway was intensely and un- 
feignedly English : for that she is beloved in her own country, 
and for that she is appreciated and respected abroad. Like 
Hogarth, Reynolds, and Millais, she was the unadulterated pro- 
duct of England, and like them she gave us of her ^ English art.' 

In the latter part of her career Kate Greenaway modified 
her manner of water-colour painting, mainly with the view to 
obtaining novelty of effect and conquering public approval. At 
the beginning she had tried to make finished pictures, as we see 
in the moonlight scene of 'The Elf Ring.* Then when she 
discovered her true mattery influenced by the requirements of Mr. 
Edmund Evans's wood-block printing, to which she adapted her- 
self with consummate ease, she used outline in pen or pencil, 
with delicate washes in colour : these drawings were made in 
every case, of course, for publication in books. Their ready 
independent sale encouraged her to elaborate her little pictures, 
and her election as Member of the Royal Institute of Painters in 
Water-Colours confirmed her in the decision to turn her attention 
to pure water-colour painting. The decreasing demand for book- 
illustration influenced her somewhat in taking the new work very 
seriously, encouraged thereto by Ruskin, who, as we have seen, 
was forever crying out for * a bit of Nature.' So she painted land- 
scapes which, in point of technique, lacked some of the accidental 
grace and freshness and serious depth which should be essential to 
such work, although they were rich in her own sentimental and 
tender way of seeing things. Then in figure painting she abandoned 
her outlines and indulged in the full strong colour which Ruskin 
always begged from her. That she should have fused this vigour 
of coloration with her own native feculty for daintiness — as for 
example in ' Lucy Locket ' — must be accounted to her credit. 

Later on her colour became more subdued and even silvery. 
We see it in the little idyll, so pure in drawing and feeling, *Two 
at a Stile' (with its curious contrast of exact full face in the girl 



From the ivater-colour sketch in the pausiicn of Miss VioUt Dickinson. 

The Artist 

and direct, while her technical skill is amply efficacious for all she 
had to do. 

In the matter of models, whether for illustrations or 
exhibition drawings, she was particular and fastidious. At 
all times she preferred to draw from the life. Her studies 
from the nude — made in her youth, with such conscientious 
accuracy that every form, every fold in the skin, and every 
undulation of high light and shadow, were rendered with the 
firmness and with ease that come of practice, knowledge, and 
skill — ^had carried her far enough for the model to be reckoned a 
servant, and not a master. But a realistic drawing is one thing, 
and a simplified archaistic rendering of a living figure quite 
another ; and we may take it, broadly, that difficulty in fieure 
draughtsmanship increases in direct ratio to the degree of its 
simplification. With anatomy, we imagine, she was less familiar. 

Miss Greenaway selected her models with much care. 
For her men, as has already been said, her father and brother 
usually would good-naturedly sit, and the type of old lady 
she often adopted was based upon Mrs. Greenaway. As for her 
children, the list of those who were pressed into the service is , 
tolerably long. Some of her models she would secure by visiting 
schools and selecting likely children, and these again would re- 
commend others. Some were already professional models them- 
selves, or were children brought to her by such. The first of all 
was the 'water -cress girl' who was employed for her earliest 
work for the publishers. *Mary,' who was secured after the 
publication of Under the fflndowy appears in all the books up to 
the Pied Piper. She belonged to a family of models, and coming 
to Miss Greenaway when a little girl, remained in her service 
until she was grown up. And years later another ' Mary ' suc- 
ceeded her. ^ Adela ' and her sister were the earliest models of 
whom any record exists, and they were employed for Under the 
ff^indowj for which Miss Greenaway's nephew Eddie also sat. 
He, indeed, is to be found in the whole series up to and including 
the Pied Piper^ that is to say in the Birthday Book^ Mother Goosey 
A Day in a Chil£s Life^ Little Ann^ Language of Flowers^ 
Marigold Garden^ and A Apple Pie. Mary's brother * Alfred* 
sat, along with his sister, for the same books as she did ; and 
* Grertie * is to be recognised mainly in Little Ann and the 
Language of Flowers. Gertie became a figure in the Greenaway 
household ; as, from the position of a model merely, she afterwaros 

273 35 

Kate Greenaway 

graduated to the rank of housemaid at Frognal, where, when she 
opened the street ' door, visitors were surprised and edified to 
recognise in her a typical ^Kate Greenaway girl,' with reddish 
hair and pointed chin, as pretty and artless a creature as if she had 
walked straight out of a Greenaway toy-book. If the reader would 
see a characteristic portrait of her, he will find one on p. 24 of the 
Language of Flowns^ and better still, perhaps, in ^ Willy and his 
Sister ' on p. 30 of Marigold Garden. Then there were ' Freddie * 
and his sisters, and Mrs. Webb's children, and * Isa,' ^ Ruby,* 
the Gilchrists, two sisters, and a little red-haired girl (name for- 
gotten) : nearly all of whom were known only by their Christian 
names, so that their identity must remain unknown to fame. 
These were the most constant models — these, and the ^little 
Mary ' to whom she frequently alludes in her letters to Ruskin. 

That the little ones were a constant tribulation to the artist, 
whose patience was often put to the severest test, her letters to 
friends bear frequent witness. For example, to Mr. Locker- 
Lampson she writes from Pemberton Gardens : — 

Rate Greenaway to Frederick Lockbr-Lampson 

You ought to enjoy the beautiful sea and this lovely weather. 
Do you see those wonderful boats we used to see at Lowestoft ? I 
never saw such magnificent crimson and orange sails, and such splendid 
curves as they made. 

How nice of you having Mr. Caldecott ; you will enjoy his society 
so much. . . . 

I have got a little girl fiwt years old coming to sit this morning — ^which 
means a fearfully fidgety morning's work. However, it is the last of 
the models for my book ; then I can go straight away with the illustra- 
tions, which will be a great gain. 

And in a lively letter to Mrs. Severn she sends a verbatim 
report of the bright but discursive dialogue between the ^ Chatter- 
box Mary ' and ^ Victim ' (herself), illustrated with fifteen sketches 
of Mary's feet in constantly changing postures, driving the artist 
to distraction and culminating in 'victim — limp — worn — 

In the class of drawings which she called ' Processions ' Miss 
Greenaway is entirely original. She could arrange a dozen, or if 
need be twenty, figures — usually of graceful girls and pretty babes — 
full of movement and action, in which there is cheerfully worked- 


' ALFY * (unfinished). 
From an experimental oil painting in the poiseakn ofjohn Greenaway, Esq, 

The Artist 

out a decorative motifs with a rhythmic line running through the 
composition. In some the work is so delicate as practically to 
defy satisfactory reproduction ; but sufficient justice can be done 
to suggest their charm of sentiment and the balance of design. 
Now and again we have in miniature a reminder of the 
languorous dignity of Leighton's ^ Daphnephoria.' Sometimes the 
movement is more lively, and we have ^ Dances ' of all kinds, now 
quaint and strangely demure, now full of the joy of life. ' The 
May Dance' is as sober as if it were designed for a panel 
in a public building ; but in ^ The Dancing of the Felspar Fairies' 
we have a vigorous abandon mingled with the conventionality ot 
graceful poses. In most of them, no doubt, the draperies are 
seldom studied accurately from life ; but it is doubtful whether, 
if they were more correct in their flow of fold, they would 
harmonise so well with the character of the figures and general 
treatment. For throughout, it must be observed, she is a 
decorative artist. Even in the delightful realism of her flowers, 
which have rarely been surpassed either in sympathy of under- 
standing or in delicacy and refinement of realisation, she never 
forgets their decorative value : they are presented to us not for 
their inherent beauty alone, but for their value upon the paper 
or upon the decorated page. 

For that reason, perhaps, Kate Greenaway was never quite at 
home as a portraitist : she resented being tied down to a face or 
figure. No doubt, such drawings as *The Red Boy ' and 'The 
Little Model ' were portraits, but she was free to depart from the 
truth as much as she chose. The children in the unfinished oil- 
paintings of ' The MufF' and * Alfy * were not less portraits, but 
the motive of these oil pictures (of the size of life) was not like- 
ness merely but practice in what Ruskin called ' the sticky art.' 
In ' Vera bamuel ' an unaccountable width has been given to the 
head, but without loss of character. There appears more truth in 
the portrait of ' Frederick Locker-Lampson ' with eyelids drooping, 
an interesting likeness of an interesting man of letters ; the 
wooUiness of effect being mainly due to the translation of stippled 
water-colour into black-and-white. The head of old 'Thomas 
Chappell' is one of the artist's masterpieces in portraiture — full 
of character and insight, and a really brilliant rendering of old 
age, firmly drawn and elaborately modelled. With the pencil Kate 
Greenaway was more at home. The rapid unfinished sketch of 
her brother, 'John Greenaway, Jr.,' is still a likeness although 


Kate Greenaway 

more than thirty years have passed since it was made ; and the two 
delightfully executed heads of < Miss Mabel Ponsonby' and 'Miss 
Eileen Ponsonby,' reinforced with faint colour in the manner of 
Downman, and with not a little of his delicacy, imply a measure 
of accomplishment attained by constant practice — the result, 
perhaps, of South Kensington training. The 'Portrait of a 
Lady,' in a method somewhat similar, is not entirely successful as 
a portrait ; but it is included here as an example of the new style 
of work which Miss Greenaway adopted towards the end of her 
career. Perhaps the most engaging of all is the miniature of 
'Joan Ponsonby,' in which we nnd an artless simplicity, a candour 
and refreshing naturalness, wholly apart and distinct from the 
photographically inspired miniature of to-day. The colours are 
simple and the handling broad for all its precision of drawing, 
for the artist has resisted the temptation to finish her flowers 
and other detaik with the microscopical minuteness which she 
employed with so much effect on more suitable occasions. 

When all Miss Greenaway's work is carefully judged, it will, 
we think, be seen that it is with the point rather than with the 
brush that she touches her highest level, whether her manner be 
precise as in her book-plates, or free as in her sketches. Of 
her book-plates, the best are unquestionably those of Mr. Locker- 
Lampson and Lady Victoria Herbert. The latter is formal in 
treatment and beautifuUv grouped, yet drawn with a certain 
hardness typical of what is called the Birmingham School ; the 
former innnitely more sympathetic in touch, the children delight- 
ful in pose, the apple-tree drawn with unusual perfection, and the 
distant city touched in with extraordinary skill. With these, 
compare the masterly pencil study of a baby toddling forwards — 
swiftly drawn, loosely handled, instinct with life and character, 
one of the best things, artistically considered, the artist ever did. 
Hardly less remarkable is the tiny sketch in a letter to Ruskin 
of a little bonneted girl holding up her skirt as she walks — a 
drawing not unworthy of Charles Keene in its vigorous light and 
shade, and suggestion of the body beneath the clothes (see p. 283). 
And yet in the text Miss Greenaway laments the badness of the 
pen ! A better pen would have produced a worse sketch. It was a 
quill that she habitually used, and, in spite of the broad line it com- 
pelled, she made good use of it. In the heading to her letter to Miss 
Dickinson, dated October 19, 1897, we can positively feel the wind 
that is scattering the leaves around the old oak. The girl with the 


The Artist 

candle, in her lener to Mrs. Locker- Lampson, which reminds us of 
Caldecott ; the little ' Violets, Sir ? ' which reminds us of Leech ; 
the dancing children, one with a tambourine, the other with hand 
on hip, who remind us of Stothard ; the group of three dancing 
children, which has been compared with the work of Lady Water- 
ford ; and the letter to John Ruslcin showing the sketch of reaper 
and sheaf-binder — are all drawn with the bread-nibbed quilt, with 

Ob » LctUr to Rinkia. 

consummate ease and masterly effect, and the/ give even more 
pleasure to the educated eye than the charming little pencil 
sketches such as those in the possession of Lady Pontifcx. 

The early sketch-books of Kate Greenaway reveal some rather 
unexpected phases of her development before she had produced any 
work characteristic enough to be recognised as hers by the public. 
It is with surprise that we see how well she drew in the very first 
stage of her career. As the reader will remember, her iirst 
leanings were towards the comic — as in the humorous sketch of the 

Kate Greenaway 

lovelorn swain piping to his ridiculous love (p. 279) : a drawing 

•^ _ . /J, . ^j^^ I 

Com (»Y^ iDndl <?utO 

C^frvvol tfwt. Hum. tfu^ ^-» 

From ■ Letter ta Rqakin. 

which Phiz might have been willing to acknowledge ; or, fl^") 

the little giri and sprite walking arm-in-arm (see p. 75}. Then 


The Artist 

the romantic moved her, and in the spirit of the great illustrators 
of the 'sixties she made the rapid pencil sketch (for composition) 
of a princess in a castle kissing a farewell to some sailor-boy whose 
ship scuds one way while the sails belly the other ; and, again, a 
long-hosed gallant gracefully doffing his cap to a ' faire ladye ' at 
a window (see p. 45). Rough as they are, both arc well arawn, 
especially the latter, but they give no hint whatever of the art 
which was to spring from them. 

Similarly with her pen-sketches. The design, dashed off at 

'V <» 

Very early sketch illustrating Kate Greenaway's ambition to be a humorous artist. 

In the possession of W. Marcus Ward, Esq. 

lightning speed, of an eighteenth -century scene at Christmas 
eve might almost be the work of Phiz or Cruikshank ; and 
the power of managing many figures on a small sheet of paper is 
already fully developed. So, too, in a drawing of a totally different 
class — * The Picnic* Miss Grecnaway had been much impressed, 
in common with the rest of the fraternity of London artists, 
by the work of the Scottish artist Mr. William Small, and had 
attempted to probe into his method of handling, particularly in the 
technical treatment of form and texture in the coat worn by the 
central figure. It need hardly be said that these sketches, and 
others in the manner of Leighton, Mr. Holman Hunt, and so on, 


Kate Greenaway 

in Little Folit under the 
anonymous authorship 
of Mrs. Bonavia Hunt, 
afterwards republished 

The Artist 

in volume form — she betrayed a certain weakness in her drawing ; 
while for a time the garishness of tint which had been demanded 
of her did not immediately disappear. But by the time Under 
the Window was reached, five vears later (1878), her difficulty 
of colour was conquered, and she stood alone, with Mr. Walter 
Crane, in the intelligent combination of healthy children's art 
and the chastened colour which was being insisted on by William 
Morris and the so-called Esthetic Movement. The reversion 
in the following year to modern illustration, in the drawings made 
for Charlotte Yonge's novels, proved once more that the decorative 
treatment of subjects was her natural r61e. When she returned 
to the true Kate Greenaway manner, the change was welcomed 
by every competent critic. A German writer expressed himselt 
in terms not less appreciative than, those which later came from 
France and Belgium. ^It is impossible,' he said, 'to describe in 
words the wealth of artistic invention, the dignity and loveliness, 
which characterise this performance. What a gulf between these 
delightful works of art of imperishable value, and the trashy 
caricatures of such stuff as our Struwelpeter ! God-speed to Kate 
Greenaway ! ' 

Mother Goose was, indeed, an advance on Under the fVindow 
— which, under the title of La Lanterne Magique^ the Revue de 
Belgiquey in an enthusiastic article, curiously attributed to a male 
artist, and which the National Zeitung extolled as much for its 
verse as for its bewitching art. The drawing here is better, and 
the effect not very seriously injured by the &ulty register of many 
of the copies. An American journal — the Literary World^ of 
Boston — declared that the delicacy and beauty of her &ces in 
outline were as good as Flaxman ; and the curious quality of 
' affectionateness ' in the drawings, their ingenuousness and 
prettiness that would have moved the heart of Stothard and 
touched the soul of Blake, firmly established the young artist in 
the position to which her former book had raised her. But not 
until A Day in a ChiUTs Life did Kate Greenaway show her full 
power as a painter of flowers — by the side of which even her pictures 
of boys and girls seem to many to yield in interest. The difficulty, 
or rather the irksomeness, which she habitually experienced in pure 
illustration of other people's ideas, in no wise affected her in 
Little Ann^ which contains some of the most delightful and 

^ Translated by J. Levoison. The Gennan venion, Am Femster^ was translated by 
Frau KSthe Freiltgrath-KrOker. 

281 36 

Kate Greenaway 

spring-like drawings she ever did, usually so excellent in com- 
position and fascinating in single figures and in detail that we 
overlook, if we do not entirely miss, certain little faults of per- 
spective — fiiults, indeed, which, if noticed at all, only add to the 
quaintness of the design. 

In the Language of Flowers and Marigold Garden Kate Green- 
away rose to her highest point in decision and firmness allied to 
the perfect drawing of flowers and fruit, although it must be 
allowed that those who have not seen the original designs 
can form no accurate judgment from the printed work. 1 he 
annual Almanacks^ too, which had been begun in 1 883, showed her 
endless resource and inexhaustible faculty of design ; yet it is 
perhaps to be regretted that so much conscientious effort and 
executive ability should have been wasted in the almost micro- 
scopic rendering of the innumerable illustrations which embellish 
these tiny books. In The English Spelling^Book another change 
is seen. In several of these beautiful line illustrations there is a 
freedom in the use of the pencil not hitherto shown, and the 
drawings of * Miss Rose and her Aunt,' *Our Dog Tray,* *Jane,* 
and a few others, modest as they are, mark a definite advance in 
Miss Greenaway's artistic development. She returned to her more 
formal manner in A Apple Pie (1886), as it was more suitable 
to the large page she had to decorate ; and she gives us 
a greater measure of combined humour and invention than 
had previously been shown, for the subject fitted her mood 
of fun and fancy exactly — far better than the same year's ^ueen 
of the Pirate Isle. On the title-page of the last- mentioned 
book, however, appears one of the prettiest vignettes she ever 
drew. Unsuspected power was revealed in The Pied Piper of 
Hamelin. Miss Greenaway was hampered, no doubt, in her 
attempt to render the pseudo- German medievalism on a large 
scale : nevertheless, she succeeded in grasping the fiiU sig- 
nificance of the poem, and the spirit maintained throughout 
and the capacity for dealing with ease with crowds of figures, 
combine in this volume to constitute a very considerable per- 

A strange contrast with the Pied Piper is Dame fViggins of 
Lee. It is scarcely likely, we think, that readers will endorse with 
much cordiality the unbounded admiration expressed by John 
Ruskin for these designs. It must be borne in mind, however, 
that they are merely rough trial sketches for approval of drawings 




The Artist 

which were to be made, but that Ruskin, charmed with their 
spontaneity, declared that they would lit the poem better in their 
scribbled state than any illustrations more complete. 

Miss Grcenaway's last book was that admirable volume for 
children, The April Baby's Book of Tunes, by the author of 
Elis^abeth and her German Garden, whose humour and love 
of children were liice to Kate Greenaway's own, with an 
added wit of the most innocent and refreshing Icind. The 
' babies,' whom the artist had never seen, were sympathetically 
pictured, and their favourite nursery rhymes were illustrated 

See p. 176. 

once more as freshly as if she had dealt with them for the first 

The survey of her work in the aggregate shows convincingly 
that even had her technique been on a fowcr level Kate Green- 
away would still have succeeded as the interprcter-in-chief ot 
childhood. Follower though she was in point of time of Mr. 
Walter Crane and Randolph Caldccott, inspired in some respects 
no doubt by their example, she nevertheless stands alone in her 
own sphere. From Lucca dclla Robbia to Ludwig Richter 
and Schwind, to Bewick and Thackeray, Cruikshank and Boutet 
de Monvel, no one has demonstrated more completely the artist's 
knowledge of and sympathy with infant life, or communicated 
that knowledge and that sympathy to us. Her pictures 
delight the little ones for their own sake, and delight us for 

Kate Greenaway 

the uke of the little ones ; and it may be taken as certain 
that Kate Grecnaway's position in the Art of England is 
assured, so long as her drawings speak to us out of their broad 
and tender humanity, and carry their message to every little 

Od 1 Leillr to Riukin. 






c. 1871. 



Aunt Louisa's | London Toy Books | Diamonds | and | Toads. 
I London. | Frederick Warne & Co. (lof x 8 J) 

Madame d'Aulnoy's Fairy Tales : 

(1) The Fair One | with | Golden Locks 

(2) The Babes in the Wood 

(3) Tom Thumb 

(4) Blue Beard 

(5) Puss in Boots 

(6) The Blue Bird 

(7) The White Cat 

(8) Hop o" my Thumb 
(9S Red Riding Hood 

AU published by Gall 8c Inglis, 6, George Street, Edinburgh. 

(^H X 7i and 9} x 74) 

Fairy Gifts 5 | or, | A Wallet of Wonders : | By Kathleen 
Knox, I author of 'Father Time's Story Book.' | Illustrations 
by Kate Greenaway. | Griffith Sc Farran, | successors to New- 
bury & Harris, | West Comer of St. Paul's Churchyard, 
London. | E. P. Dutton & Co., New York. (6j x 5) 

The Quiver of Love : A Collection of Valentines, pBy Walter 
Crane and Kate Greenaway] Marcus Ward & Co. 

1878. Poor Nelly 5 | By | The Author of «Tiny Houses,' and *Two 

* Little Folks/ Fourpenny Bits'; | and | Polly and Joe. | Cassell, Petter, 

1877. Galpm & Co., | London, Paris and New York. | [AU Rights 
Reserved.] {Written by Mrs, Bonavia Hunt) (7,^ x 4I) 

1878. Topo: A Tale about English Children in Italy. By G. £. 

BrunefiUe. With 44 Pen-and-ink Illustrations by Kate Green- 
away. Marcus Ward & Co. (Written by Lady Colin Campbell) 

1878. Under the Window | Pictures and Rhymes I for Children 

I by I Kate Greenaway | engraved and printea | by [Edmund 
Evans. | London : | George Routledge & Sons | Broadway, 
Ludgate Hill. | New York : 416, Broome Street. (9 J x 7I) 

1879. The Heir of Redclyffe | [By Charlotte M. Tonge] Illustrated 
(Another by Kate Greenaway I London | Macmillan & Co. | 1879 I 
edition 1902.) The Right of TranslaUon is Reserved. (7 J x 4}) 


Kate Greenaway 

1879. Amateur Theatricals | By | Walter Hemes Pollock | and | 

Ladv Pollock J London : | Macmillan & Co. | 1879. | The 
Right of Txanslation and Reproduction is Reserved (7^ x 4I) 

1879. Heartsease | or | The Brother's Wife | By | Charlotte M. 

(Another Yonge | Illustrated by Kate Greenaway | London | Macmillan 

edition 1902.) Sc Co., Limited | New York : The Macmillan Company | 
1902 I All rights reserved (7I x ^f ) 

1879. T"^ 'Little Folks*' | Painting Book. | A Series of | Outline 

Engravings for Water-Colour Painting, | By Kate Greenaway, 
J with descriptive stories and verses by George Weatherly. I 
Cassell Petter 8c Galpin : | London, Paris and New YorL | 
{The hook contains 107 illustrations^ 88M thousand,) (8| x 6 j) 

1880. Kate Greena way's I Birthday Book | for Children | with 

Printed by 
London : | 
Hill. I New 

382 Illustrations, | Drawn by Kate Greenaway, 

Edmund Evans. | Verses by Mrs. Sale Barker. 

George Routledge & Sons, | Broadway, Ludgate 

York : 416, Broome Street. | [All Rights Reserved.] (3! x 3^) 

1 88 1. The Library. | By | Andrew Lang | with a Chapter on | Modem 

English Illustrated Books by | Austin Dobson | London j 
Macmillan & Co. | 1881 | The right of reproduction is reserved. 

188 1. A Day in a Child's Life. | Illustrated b^ | Kate Greenaway. | 

Music by Myles B. Foster. | (^Organist ojthe Foundling Hospital,) 

I Engraved and Printed by Edmund Evans. I London: | George 

Routledge & Sons, I Broadway, Ludgate Hill. | New York : 

9, Lafayette Place. | [Copyright.] (9I x 8^) 

1 88 1. Mother Goose | or the | Old Nursery Rhymes | Illustrated by | 

Kate Greenaway | engraved and | printed by | Edmund Evans. 
I London and New York | George Routledge & Sons. (6f x 4f } 

1882. Little Ann | and | other Poems | By | Jane and Ann Taylor 
(Printed J Illustrated by I Kate Greenaway | printed in colours by 

1882. pub- Edmund Evans | London : George Routledge & Sons | 
lished 1883.) Broadway, Ludgate Hill | New York : 9, I^ayette Place. 

I [The Illustrations are Copyright.] (9 x 5f|) 

1883. Almanack | for | 1883 | By | Kate Greenaway | London | 

George Roudedge & Sons | Broadway, Ludgate Hill | New 
York : 9, Lafayette Place {j^\\ x 2}) 

1883-84. FoRS Clavigera I Letters | to the Workmen and Labourers | of 
(And subee- Creat Britain I By John Ruskin, LL.D., | George Allen, | 
quent editions.) Orpington and London 

1884. Almanack | for | 1884 | By | ^.^te Greenawav | Printed by 

Edmund Evans J London : George Routledge & Sons | Broad- • 
way, Ludgate Hill | New York : 9, Lafayette Place | \Copyright\ 

(si X 3l) 

1884. A Painting | Book | by | Kate Greenaway | with Outlines from 

Other editions her various works J for | Girls and Boys | to Paint | London \ 
with different George Routledge & Sons | Broadway, Ludgate Hill 
title, by F. (^1 X 7*) 

Wamc & Co. ^^* '^^ 


Works Illustrated by Kate Greenaway 

1884. Language of Flowers I Illustrated by | Kate Greenaway 

Printed in Colours by ] EdmUnd Evans | London : George 
Routledge 8c Sons. (8^^ x 4I) 

1884. The I English Spelling-Book | accompanied by I A Progressive 

Senes | of | Easy and familiar lessons | by | William Mavor, 
LL.D. I Illustrated by Kate Greenaway | engraved and printed 
by Edmund Evans. | London J George Routledge 8c Sons | 
Broadway, Ludgate Hill | New York: 9, Lafayette Place | 1885. 

(7 X 4i) 

1885. Almanack | for | 1885 j ^^ I Kate Greenaway | London | 

George Routledge 8c Sons | Broadway, Ludgate Hill | New 
York : 9, Lafayette Place (3^^ x 2|) 

1885. Dame Wiggins of Lee, | and her | Seven Wonderful Cats ; | 

(Second A humorous tale [ written principally by a lady of ninety, 

edition 1897.) I Edited, with additional verses, | By John Ruskin, LL.D., | 
Honorary Student of Christ Church, | and Honorary Fellow of 
Corpus Christ! College, Oxford. | And with new illustrations | 
By ICate Greenaway | with twenty-two woodcuts. | George 
Allen, Sunnyside, Orpington ; | and 156 Charing Cross Road, 
London. (7^ x 4^) 

1885. Marigold Garden | Pictures and Rhymes | By | Kate Green- 

away j Printed in Colours | By | Edmund Evans | Xx>ndon | 
George Routledge 8c Sons | Broadway, Ludgate Hill | New 
York : 9, Lafayette Place. (10} x 8j) 

? 1885. Kate Greenaway's | Alphabet, i London | George Routledge 
8c Sons I Broadway, Ludgate Hill | New York : 9, Lafayette 
Place. (2^ X 2^) 

? 1885. Kate Grebnaway*s Album. With 192 Illustrations within 
gold borders. Printed in Colours by Edmund Evans. George 
Routledge & Sons, Broadway, Ludgate Hill. [Printed but not 

1886. Almanack | for | 1886 | By I Kate Greenaway | London | 

George Routledge 8c Sons | Broadway, Ludgate Hill | New 
York : 9, Lafayette Place. (sH ^ ^i) 

1886. A Apple Pie | By | Kate Greenaway I Engraved and Printed by 

Edmund Evans. I London : George Routledge 8c Sons I Broad- 
way, Ludgate Hill | New York : 9, Lafayette Place (8^ x 10}) 

1886. The Queen | of | the Pirate Isle I By | Bret Harte | Illus- 

trated by Kate Greenaway | Engravea and Printed by Edmund 
Evans | London : Chatto 8c Windus | 2 14, Piccadilly. 

(8i X 6i) 

1887. Almanack | for 1887 | By | Kate Greenaway | George Rout- 

ledge 8c Sons I The Pictures are Copyright. (3^4) 

1887. Queen Victoria's Jubilee Garland. (A booklet made up of 

illustrations already published.) 


Kate Greenaway 

1887. Rhymes | for the | Young Folk | By | William Allingham | 

with Pictures by | Helen Allingham, Kate Greenaway, | Caroline 
Paterson, and Harry Fumiss | Engraved and Printed by Edmund 
Evans | Cassell & Company, Limited, | London, Paris» New 
York and Melbourne. (81^ x 6|) 

1888. Orient Line Guide | Chapters for Travellers by Sea and by Land 

I Illustrated. The Thira Edition, re-written, with Maps and 
Plans. I Edited for the Managers of the Line | By | W. J. 
Loftie, B.A., F.S.A., I Author of *A History of London,* 
* Windsor,* • Authorised | Guide to the Tower,* etc. etc. | Price 
2/6. I London : | Sampson Low, Marston, Searle & Rivington, 

I Limited, | St. Dunstan's House, Fetter Lane. | Edward Stan- 
ford, 26 and 27 Cockspur Street, S.W. | 1888. | [Entered at 
Sutioners' Hall.— All Rights Reserved] (8^ x 6|) 

1888. Kate Green away's | Almanack | for | 1888 | George Routledge 

& Sons (3f X 2|) 

1888. The Pied Piper | op | Hamelin | by | Robert Browning | with 

35 illustrations | by | Kate Greenaway | engraved and printed 
in colours by Edmund Evans I London | George Routledge 
8c Sons I Broadway, Ludgate Hill | Glasgow, Manchester and 
New York. (9! x 8|) 

1889. Almanack | por | 1889 | By | Kate Greenaway | Printed by 

Edmund Evans | George Routledge 8c Sons | London, Glasgow, 
and New York (3f x zf ) 

1889. Kate Greenavitay's | Book of Games | with Twenty-four Full- 

page Plates I Engraved and Printed in Colours by Edmund 
Evans | London | George Routledge 8c Sons | Broadway, 
Ludgate Hill | Glasgow, Manchester, and New York. (9 x 7^) 

1889. The Royal Progress | op | King Pepito | By | Beatrice F. 

Cresswell | Illustrated by | Kate Greenaway | engraved and 
printed by Edmund Evans | London | Society for Promoting 
Christian Knowledge | Northumberland Avenue, Charing Cross, 
W.C. ; I 43, Queen Victoria Street, E.C. | Brighton : 135, North 
Street. | New York : E. and J. B. Young & Co. (8^ x 6) 

1890. Almanack | por | 1890 | By | Kate Greenaway | Engraved and 

Printed by E. Evans | George Routledge 8c Sons (3^ x 3} 

1 89 1. Kate | Greena way's | Almanack | por | 1891 | George Rout- 

ledge 8c Sons, Limited (4 x af) 

189Z. Kate Greenaway*s | Almanack | por | 1892 | George Rout- 

ledge 8c Sons, Limited (3I x af) 

1893. Kate Greenaway's | Almanack | por 1893 | George Roudedge 

8c Sons, Limited (3^ x af ) 

1894. Kate Greenaway's | Almanack | por 1894. | George Roudedge 

8c Sons, Limited (3| ^ ^i) 


Works Illustrated by Kate Greenaway 

1895. Kate Grbenaway's | Almanack | for | 1895 I George Rout- 

ledge Sc Sons, Limited (3I x 2|) 

1897. Kate I Grbenaway's | Almanack | and Diary for J 1897 | 

J. M. Dent 8c Co. : | 67 St. James's St., London (4^ x 3} 

1900. The I April Baby's Book of Tunes | with | The Story of 

How THEY CAME | TO BE WRITTEN | By the Author of I 
'Elizabeth and her German Garden' | Illustrated by Kate 
Greenaway | London | Macmillan 8c Co., Limited | New 
York : The Macmillan Company | 1900 | All Rights Reserved. 


1882. The Illustrated | Children's I Birthday-Book | Edited, and 

in part written | W | F. E. Weatherley. | With Illustrations by | 
Kate Coleman, luite Greenaway, Robert Barnes, | Mrs. Staples, 
Miss Bennett and others. | London : | W. Mack, 4. Paternoster 
Square. 1882. (4f^3i) 

Miscellanea : 
1 868. Thf People's Magasdne, 

1 873-80. Little Folks. Sena} Story of « Poor Nelly,' etc. etc. (9^ x 7 J) 

1874. CasselTs Magazine. (10^ x 7) 

188 1-2. Little fVide-Anudke (G. Routledge 8c Sons). Edited by Mrs. Sale 

1882, etc. Routledge* s Christmas Number. ('of x 8} 

St. Nicholas. 

The Graphic. 

Illustrated London Ne*ws. 
1882, etc. Routledge* s E'very Girts Annual. ( ' o >< ^i) 

v.y. The Girls* 0<wn Paper. 

Etc. etc. 

289 37 


A AppU FUy 58 ; success of, 155 ; 

Rutkia on, 156, 160; drawing in 
Q. Victoria and Albert Museum, 256 ; 

models for, 273 ; style of, 282 
Abbot John of Berkhampstead, copy of 

illumination of, 47 
A Beckett, Mr. Arthur, member of 

Memorial Committee, 256 
Agnew, Sir William, member of Memorial 

Committee, 256 
Aldridge, Aunt, visit to, 10 
Aldridge, Uncle, visit to, 28 
Alexander, Miss Francesca, 115; Kate 

Oreenaway's pretended jealousy of, 

132; Ruskin*s reference to, 133, 

138; and Rttskin, 146, 156$ The 

Peace of Polissena^ Kate Greenaway^s 

design for cover of, 170 
Alexandre, Arsene, on Kate Greenaway, 

3, 268 
Allaman, Mrs., Kate Greenaway 's first 

schoolmistress, 14 
Allen, Mr. George, 112 
AUhusen, Mrs., references to, in Kate 

Greena way's letters, 164, 167 
Allingham, Mrs. W., fellow-student with 

Kate Greenaway at Heatherley's, 43 j 

on Kate Greenaway 's work, 100 j 

Rnskin's Lecture on, 114; Kate 

Greena way's 

on, 161 $ as 

away» 167, 172 ; influence of, 

Kate Greenaway's landscape work, 

269, 270 
Almanack^ first (1883), 122; 1883-1897, 

58; 1884 and 1885, 127; 1884, 

drawings for, exhibited at Paris, 174 ; 

visit to, 160 ; Ruskin 
friend of Kate Green- 
influence of, on 

1886, success of, 155; 1887, 163; 
1888, 172$ 1889, 174$ 1889 and 
1895, drawings for Mover' t Spdl'mg 
Book, used in, 129 \ 1890, 177 j 1891, 
179; 1892-1900, 181$ 1893, draw- 
ings for, sold by Messrs. Palmer, 
Howe Sc Co., 182 J 1897, 210 
Alphabet, Kate GreeHawav\ success of, 129 
Amateur Theatricalsy designs for, 48, 78 
American Slueen, The, contribution to, 172 
*An Angel Visited the Green Earth,' at 
Royal Institute (1890), 178 

* An Old Farm House,' at Royal Institute 

(1891), 179 

Anderson, Miss, letter from, on Pmck 
portrait of Kate Greenaway, 87 ; re- 
ference to, by Ruskin, 155 

Anderson, Miss Mary, 167 

Anderson, Mr. J. G. S., chairman of 
Orient Line, 49, 179 

Anderson, Mrs. Garrett, M.D., 49 \ as 
medical adviser and friend of Kate 
Greenaway, 167 

* Apple -Blossom — A Spring Idyll,' at 

Dudley Gallery (1890), 50 

* Apple Trees,' sold, 183 

April BaSy's Book 0/ Tunes, The, 51 ; illus- 
trations to, 249 ; letter from author 
of, 249 ; style of, 283 

Art education at William Street, 41 ; at 
Canonbury House, 42 ; at South 
Kensington, 42 ; at Heatherley's, 43 ^ 
at the Slade School, 43 

' Art of England,' Ruskin's Lecture on the, 

Ashburton, Lady, 167 

Ashburton, Dowager Lady, commission 
from, 181 


Kate Greenaway 

* At a Gmrden Door/ sold, 183 

jtunt Lomui^t London Toy Seeks Seriet, 

deiignt for, 49 
Autobiography of childhood, 9, 16, 28 

Babiet and- BloMsemt, 96 

* Baby Boy,' at R.A^ 192 

* Baby Boy in Blue Coat and Tippet,' told, 

«Babyin White, A,'272 
Baby's Dikut^ designs for, 251 
Backgrounds, difficulty with, 238 
Ballad ef a Nun (Davidson), Kate Green- 
away on, 196 
Bancroft, Sir Squire, reading of Tht 
Christmas Cm-oI for Memorial Fund, 


BashkirtselF, Marie, Kate Greenaway on, 

187, 188 
Beardsley, Aubrey, Kate Greenaway on, 

187, 205 
Belgium, vogue and imitators in, 106 
« Belinda,' sold, 183 
Bell, R. Anning, Kate Greenaway on 

illustrations to Midsummer Nights 

Drtam by, 204 
Bellini's, G^ * Venus, Mistress of the 

World,' Ruskin on, 168 

* Betty,' sold, 224 

Birdwood, Sir George, member of 
Memorial Conmiittee, 256 

Birth, place and date, 8 

Birthday Beek^ 58 j publication and success 
of, 77 $ as inspirer of R. L. Stevenson, 
77 ; PwkM on, 87 ; Kate Greenaway 
on success of, 91 ; designs from, used 
for Pmnting Beok^ 128 ; models for. 

Black, Mrs. J., book-plate for, 182 
Blake's Songs eflnmcence^ designs for, 251 
Body-colour, use of, by Kate Greenaway, 

Bodt eJGames^ 58 ; publication of, 174 
Bo<A ofGirlsy A^ designs for, 251 
Book-plates for Mr. Locker-Lampson, etc., 

88, 89, 182, 276 
Books illustrated by Kate Greenaway, 

list of, 285 
^Boy with Basket of Apples,' at Royal 

Institute (*Off to the VilUge '), 178 
' Boyhood of Sir Walter Raleigh ' (MilUis), 

Kate Greenaway on, 228 

* Bracken Gatherers, The,' style of, 270 
Brant wood, first visit to, 112 

British Museum, work at, 47 

* Brother and Sister,' 270 

Brown, Ford Madoi, influence of, on Kate 
Greenaway 's work, 270 

Browning, R., acquaintance with, 88 

Bumc- Jones, Sir Edward, Kate Greenaway 
on *The Briar Rose,' 209, 231 ; on 
May-tree in * Merlin and Vivien,' 
230 ; on drawings of, 238, 239 

Burne-Jones, Miss, reference to, by Ruskin, 

Butler, Lady, on student days with Kate 

Greenaway, 43 
'Buttercup Field, A,' sold, 183 

Caldecott, Randolph, as rival and friend, 
69 \ letters from, to Kate Greenaway, 
70 ; Kate Greenaway on death d, 
70 ; story of Kate Greenaway'i 
marriage to, 70 ; Kate Greenaway on 
work of, 89 ; contributions to Rmt- 
led ft* s Christmas Nmuber, 10 1 ; and 
Manor y 129 

Calendars for 1884, 127 

' Calm in a Teacup,' 272 

Calvert, influence of, on Kate Greenaway's 
work, 270 

Campbell, Lady Colin, on Topo^ 68 

Canonbury House, Art classes at, 42 

Carlyle, Thomas, Kate Greenaway on, 

Cassell & Company, Kate Greenaway's 

first work for, 51 
Castle, Egerton, on Kate Greenaway's 

book-plates, 182 
Chappell, Mary, visit to, 29 
Chappell, Thomas, portrait of, 275 
Character of Kate Greenaway, 2 

* Cherry Woman, The,' sold, 183 
Chesneau, Ernest, on Kate Greenaway'i 

work, 5 ; asks Ruskin for portrait of 

Kate Greenaway, 117 
Chicago Exhibition (1893), sale of Kate 

Greenaway's drawings at, 181 
Childhood, autobic^raphy of, 9, 16, 28 
Children's dress, Kate Greenaway as a 

reformer of, 48, 268 
Children's Hospiul, Great Ormond Street, 

* Kate Greenaway ' Cot in, 256 
Christmas Cards, first designs for, 44, 46, 

74$ designs for Marcus Ward, 50; 

development of, 73 j published by 

Goodall & Sons (1884), 127; for 

Prof. Ruskin, 272 
Christ's Folk in the Afenmne^ edited by 

Ruskin, 170 



Cinderella, drawing of, 165 

Clarke, Sir C. Purdon, member of 

Memorial Committee, 256 
Cleveland, Duchess of, meeting of Kate 

Greenaway with, at British Museum, 


* Coifiiire Greeneway,' 268 

Collie Place, studio in, 55 
Colour, work in, 270, 272, 281 
Continent, The, interview in, with Kate 

Greenaway, 130 
Copyright of drawings, refusal to part 

with, 106 
Corbet, Mrs. Ridley, fellow-student and 

friend of Kate Greenaway, 167 
Costume of eighteenth century, chosen by 

Kate Greenaway, 44 
Costumes, *■ Kate Greenaway,* 4, 44, 48, 


* Cottage in Surrey, A,' at Royal Institute 

(1891), 179 

* Cottages,' sold, 183 

Crane, Walter, drawings by, in S^niver of 
I'*>^^^ 47i 53 > recollections of Kate 
Greenaway, 71 j Kate Greenaway 
on work of, 90; contributions to 
Jtoutiedgfs Ckristnuu Number, 10 1 ; 
member of Memorial Committee, 256 

Cremation, 252 

Cresswell, Beatrice F., author of The Royal 
Progreu oj King Pepito, 174 

Cyrano de Bergerac, Kate Greenaway on, 23 5 

Dame H^iggins of Lee, drawings for, 120 ; 
publication of, 130 ; Ruskin on, 130 ; 
style of, 282 

* Dancing of the Felspar Fairies,' 275 
Dat in a Child's Life, A, ^%\ origin of, 

loi ; success of, 10 1 ; designs from, 
in Painting Book, 128 ; drawing in 
Victoria and Albert Museum, 256 j 
models for, 273 j excellence of 
flower-painting in, 281 

*■ Dead,' water-colour sketch, 251, 264 

Death, Kate Greenaway on, 189, 190, 263 

Death of Kate Greenaway, 252 

Detatt, yanmal det, on Kate Oreenaway's 
work, 268 

De Monvel, Boutet, inspired by Kate 
Greenaway, 2 

Dent, J. M., ic Co^ Ahnanack for 1897, 

Diamonds and Toads, drawings for, 49 

Dickinson, Miss Violet, 167 ; beguunng of 
friendship with, 188 j letten from 

Kate Greenaway to, 9, 16, 189, 190, 
191, 192, 193, 205, 206, 208, 214, 
215, 218, 221, 222, 224, 225, 233, 
237, 241, 253 

Dobson, Austin, Mr^ on venes of Kate 
Greenaway, 62 ; on Under the Hlndow 
drawings, 63 ; on drawings for The 
Library, 85 ; poem by, in Magazine 
of Art, with Kate Greenaway illustra- 
tion, 124 j friend of Kate Greenaway, 
167 ; verse on death of Kate Green- 
away, 253 

Dolls, Kate Greenaway's, 26 

Dove CotUge (Wordsworth's), Kate Green- 
away's visit to, 187 

' Down the Steps,' sold, 183 

Downman, J., A.R.A., influence of, on 
Kate Greenaway, 270 

Doyle, Richard, influence of, on Kate 
Greenaway, 270 

Dreams of childhood, 16 

Dudley Gallery, early exhibits at, 44, 45 ; 
* Apple-Blossom,' 50 \ sale of drawings 
at, in 1872, 51 J sale of water-coloun 
at, in 1876, 55 ; sale of pictures at, 
1878, 69; exhibits at, in 1880, 

Dumas, Alexandre, ^ik, as admirer of Art 
of Kate Greenaway, 117 

Du Maurier, George, Kate Greenaway on 
work of, 204 J references to, in Kate 
Greenaway's letten, 164, 167 

DOsseldorf, street in which Kate Green- 
away is falsely said to have lived, 89 

Early life of Kate Greenaway, 8 

* Elf Ring, The,' 270, 271 

Eliot, George, and Under the Window 
drawings, 57 ; letter from, to Mr. 
Evans, 58 

EVtzabetk and her German Garden, Kate 
Greenaway on, 243 ; letter from the 
author of, 250 

Empress Frederick, visit to H.I.H. the, 98 \ 
correspondence with, 100 

English Book-plates, Kate Greenaway's 
work in, 182 

English Illustrated Magauine, work for, 184 

Evans, Edmund, first auociation with 
Kate Greenaway, 48 \ yellow-back 
covers for, 5 1 ; Under the Window 
and story of its production, 57 ; 
other works produced during partner- 
ship with, 58 $ methods of printing, 
64 ; reference to, by Mn. Allingham, 


Kate Greenaway 

172 ; extent of partnership with, 211; 

death of, ae Preface 
Evans, Mrs. Edmund, account of Kate 

Greenaway by, in GirVi Own Paper, 

59 J letters from Kata Greenaway to, 

60, 113, 244, 248 
Evans, Miss Lily, letters from Kate 

Greenaway to, 78, 107, 113, 145 
E'vtry GirPs Annualy designs for, 85 

' Fable of the Girl and her Milk Pail, The,' 
sold, 183 

Faaj Gifts i or, A WalUt offFonden^ 53 

Fairy Tales, Kate Greenawray's preferences 
in, 247 

* Fancy Dress Ball, The,' sold, 76 

*• Fern Gatherer, A,' sold, 5 1 

Figaro, Le, on Kate Greenaway's work, 

Fine Art Society, exhibition of Under the 
Window drawings at (1880), 63; 
Kate Greenaway exhibition at (189 1), 
179, 182 ; third exhibition at (1898), 
224, 226 ; fourth exhibition at, 254 

FitzClarence, Lady Dorothy, Kate Green- 
away on, 231 

Fiveash, the Misses, school of, 38 

Flower painting in A Day in a CMild's lAfi, 
etc., 281 

Fort Clavigera, drawings by Kate Green- 
away m, 120, 122 ; reference to Kate 
Greenaway in, 120 ; Kate Greenaway 
on, 223 

Foster, Mr., on A Day in a ChUe^s Lifi^ 


Fremantle, Lady, member of Memorial 

Committee, 256 
French art, Kate Greenaway on, 233 
Fripps, Miss, 167 
Frognal, house at, designed by Mr. Norman 

Shaw, R.A., 142 ; F. Locker-Lamp- 

son on, 91, 144 ; Ruskin on, 143 
Fryers* farm, visit to the, 3 1 
Furniss, Harry, * Grinaway Christmas cards ' 

in Punch, 102 

Gazette des Beaux-Arts, La, article in, on 

Kate Greenaway, 106 
German, Kate Greenaway falsely claimed 

as a, 89 
Gertie, the model, 273 
Giorgione, Kate Greenaway on work of, 

Girardin, Jules, admirer of Kate Green- 
away's art, 117 

' Girl and her Milk Pail, The,* 272 

' Girl and Two ChOdrvn,* at Royal Institute 

(1895), «9». >97 
' Girl drawing a Chaise,* sold at Chicago, 

'Girl in Hat and Feathers,' at Royal 

Institute (1897), 2ii j sold, 224 
' Girl in Pink and Bhick,' sold, 224 

* Girl nursing a Baby,' at Royal Institute 

('895). »97 

* Girl's Head, A,' at Royal Academy (1891), 

GirPs Own Paper, account of Kate Green- 
away by Mrs. Evans in, 59 ; work 
for, 85 

* Gleanexi going Home,' at Royal Institute 

(1895), 192, 197 

' Going to School,' sold, 224 

Goodall 8c Sons, and Kate Greenaway 
Christmas cards, 127 

Graphic, The, first work for, 55 

GreenaMray, John, father of the artut, 8 | 
work for Illustrated Lcndon News, 39 ; 
love for Kate Greenaway, 39; as 
engraver, 39 ; death of, 177 } as 
model to Kate Greenawray, 273 

Greenaway, John, brother to Kate Green- 
away, sub-editor of The younuU of the 
Chemical Society ; letter from, on life 
of Kate Greenaway, 144; instructs 
Kate Greenaway in perspective, 168 ; 
as model to Kate Greenaway, 273 ; 
portrait of, 275 

Greenaway, Mrs., opens a shop in Upper 
Street, Islington, 13 ; death of, 184 } 
as model to Kate Greenaway, 273 

* Greenawisme,' 268 

* Green Seat, The,' sold, 183 
Greet Close, the, at Rolleston, 10 
Griffith & Farran, designs for Fairy Gifts 

for, 52 
' Grinaway Christmas cards ' in Punch, 102 
Grosvenor Gallery, invitation to con- 
tribute to, 85 ; Exhibition of 1884, 
Ruskin on, 137 
GrOne Weg, Dilsseldorf, where Kate 
Greenaway is falsely alleged to have 
lived, 89 

Hampstead, house at, F. Locker-Lampson's 

suggestions for names for, 91 
'Happy Wretched Family,' payment for, 

Hare, Augustus, Kate Greenaway on 

Life of, 16 



Harte, Bret, The S^uten of tkt Pirau Isle, 

156, 163 
Hartley, Mr. Harold, member of Memorial 

Committee, 256 
HeartteaMj illustrations to, 77 
Heatherley's, Kate Greenaway attends 

Life Classes at, 43 
Heir of Redclyfft, illustrations to, yj 
Herbert, Lady Victoria, 167 ; book-plate 

for, 182, 276 \ member of Memorial 

Committee, 256 
Highbury, Kate Greenaway's home at, 21 
Hospital for Women, New, design for 

Bazaar album for, 178 
Hoxton, home at, 1 3 

* Huguenots, The ' (Sir J. Millais, ILA.), 

Kate Greenaway on, 219 
Hullah, John, acquamtance with, and 
designs for Time and Tune, 85 

* HyUs and the Water-Nymphs ' (J. W. 

Waterhouse, R.A.], Kate Greenaway 
on, 216 

IbbetuM, Peter, Kate Greenaway on, 204 

Ulwmnated Magazine^ 23, 246 

Illustrated Fanmy younud. The, 23 

Illustrated London News, Mr. Greenaway's 
work for, 8, 39 ; Kate Greenaway's 
first work for, 51 j recognised con- 
tributor to, 55, 85 

Illustration work, Kate Greenaway's objec- 
tion to, 51 

Imitators of Kate Greenaway, 105, 106, 

Indian Mutiny, Kate Greenaway's recollec- 
tion of, 41 

International Art Society, the, Kate 
Greenaway on, 231 

Interview, fictitious, with Kate Green- 
away, 131 

Interviewers, Kate Greenaway's objectipns 
to, 78 

Islington, home at, 13 

'Jack and Jill,' sold, 183 
Jackson, Mason, tribute to Mr. John 
Greenaway, Sr., by, 178 

Jackson, Miss, school of, 38 
eune. Lady, reference to, in Kate Green- 
away's letters, 164, 167 ; visit of 
Kate Greenaway to, 224, 230; 
member of Memorial Committee, 257 
Jones, * Grandma,' and her husband, 14 
journal dee Debats, on Kate Greenaway's 
work, 268 

Kate Greenawt^'^s Painting Book, 58, 128 
King Pepito, 58 

Kitchener, Lord, Kate Greenaway on, 237 
^ Knocker,' Kate Greenaway's pet name, 39 
Kr6ker, Frau KSthe Freiligrath-, German 

translator of Under the Windwo, 85 
Kronheim, Messrs., early work for, 46 \ 

Diamonds and Toads, designs for, 49 \ 

* Nursery Toy Books,* 49 

Labonchere, Miss Noma, on Kate Green- 
away's book-plates, 182 

Ladies* Book-plates, Kate Greenaway's work 
in, 182 

Ladiei Home Journal, The, work for, 183 

Lang, Andrew, Mr., and The Library, 85 

Langu^e ofFlvwers, 58, 127 ; Rusliun on, 
149 ; drawings for, exhibited at Paris 
(1889), 174 ; drawings of, in Victoria 
and Albert Museum, 256 ; models 
for, 273 ; excellence of drawings in, 

Lamterne Magique, La, French and Belgian 
edition of Under the Windwo, 28 1 

Leighton, Lord, purchaser of Kate Green- 
away drawings, 180 ; funeral of, 201 ; 
Kate Greenaway on death of, 203 

Leiningen-Westerburg, Count of, on Kate 
Greenaway's art, 117 

Leslie, G. D., R.A., influence of, in Kate 
Greenaway's work, 270 

Liberty, Mr. Arthur Lasenby, Treasurer of 
Memorial Committee, 256 

Library, The, drawing for, 85 

* Lilies,' sold, 224 

Literary fVorld, The, on Under the fFindow^ 

Little Ann and other Poems, 22, 58 $ dedi- 
cated to Mrs. Locker- Lampson, 96 ; 
drawings for new edition of, 105 ; 
Stacy Marks, R.A., on, 121 ; draw- 
ings for, exhibited at Paris (1889), 
1 74 ; drawings of, in Victoria and 
Albert Musfcum, 256 ; models for, 
273 ; excellence of drawings in, 281 

* Little Dinky,' tail-piece for London Lyrics, 


* Little Fanny,' frontispiece to Routledge*s 

Christmas Number, 10 1 
Little Folks, first appearance in, 51 $ * Poor 
Nelly' in, 280 

* Little Girl and Green Cradle,' at Royal 

Institute (1895), 197 
' Little Girl in Red,' at Royal Institute 
(1895), i9». «97 


■ Little Girl in 5c 
' Little Girl with 

(1S7!). 69 
* Little Girl with 

(iggo), 8s 
' Litlle Girl with 
'LiltU Girlie,' d: 

< Little Go-Cart, ' 
Liltle Model, Tl 
' Little Phjllii,' I 

Kate Greeai 

by, 91 i <Til 

on KiukiD, ; 
Poemi oa hi 
tioni by Kit 

144 j referoi 

Kite Grecni 
171 i book-f 

tettert from K 
89. 9'. 9». 9 


Eton, 96 ; be 
Locker - [jmpHD 

book-plile fo 
LolTelt, M. A. C. 

art, 1 17 
Loftie, Rev. W. 


Memorial to Kate Greenaway, 256 ; 
Committee, 256 

Meredith, George, O.M., Kate Greenaway 
on work of, 196 

Millais, Sir J. £., P.R.A., portraits of Duke 
of Argyll and Miss Nina Campbell, 
Ruskin on, 1 37 ; Kate Greenaway 
on work of, 219, 228 

Millard, Miss, Kate Greenaway on, 231 

Miller, Mrs., recollections of Kate Green- 
away by, 52, 167 

* Misses,' at Royal Academy, 78 
Models, child, Kate Greenaway 's tact 

with, 52, 273, 274 

Modern Art, Kate Greenaway on, 185, 
228, 229 

Modern Planting (Mr. George Moore), Kate 
Greenaway on, 2 1 8 

MotAer GooUy 58 ; publication and success 
of, 100 ; H. Stacy Marks, R.A., on, 
104 ; Ruskin on, 116; designs from, 
in Painting Book^ 128 ; models for, 

Muff, The,* 275 

* Mulberry Bush, The,' drawing sold at 

Chicago, 182 

* Musing,' sold, in 1877, 55 

Muther, Dr., on Kate Greenaway's work, 

^My Lady and Her Pages,' sold, 76 
*My Lord's Page and my Lady's Maid,' 

sold, 76 

National Zattaig on Under the IVmdoWy 85, 

Nelthorpe, Mrs. Sutton, letters from Kate 

Greenaway to, 166, 167, 208 
Neue Freie Preae, on Kate Greenaway's 

work, 268 
Nevill, Lady Dorothy, 167 ; commission 

from, 1 72 ; member of Memorial 

Committee, 256 
Nevill, Miss Meresia, member of Memorial 

Committee, 256 
New English Art Club, Kate Greenaway 

on, 221 
Newhaven Court, Kate Greenaway's visits 

to, 86 
New Republic^ Tkt^ Kate Greenaway on, 

NiMas Nickkiyf Kate Greenaway on, 

Nickson, Miss Sarah, book-plate for, 182 
Nordau, Dr. Max, on Kate Greenaway's 

work, 265 

Northcote, Lady, commission from, 172 
Nude, studies from the, 43 ; Ruskin's 

advice on, 117, 133, 147 
Nttrsery RhymeSj sketches for, 251 

* Nursery Toy Books,' designs for, 49 

' Odd House,' visit to the, 10 

*Off to the Village' ('Boy with Basket 

of Apples'), 178 
Oil-painting, 237 j difficulties with, 241, 

242, 244 

* Old Farm House, The,' 270 
'Old Steps, The,' sold, 183 

' On the Road to the Ball,' sold, 76 

« Ophelia ' (Sir J. £. Milkis, P.R.A.), Kate 

Greenaway on, 228, 229, 242 
Orient Line Guide^ title-page for, 49, 179 
'Over the Tea,' sold, 183 

Painting Book, Kate Greena%pay\ 58, 128 
Paris Exhibition, 1889, contributions to, 

5» «74 

Paris Exhibition, 1900, invitation to con- 
tribute to, 248 ; invitation declined, 

Passage from Some Memoirs (by Mrs. 
Richmond Ritchie), Kate Greenaway 
on, 196 

Peace of PoRssena, The, by Miss Francesca 
Alexander, design for cover of, 170 

* Peeper, A,' 50 

Pemberton Gardens, Greenaways' house in. 

Pen and pencil sketches, 279 

Peo^e*s Magavine, early work for, 45, 46, 

75. . 
Perspective, instruction in, from Ruskin, 

167 ; from John Greenaway, 168 j 

lack of knowledge of, 167 

* Picnic, The,' 279 

Pied Piper of HameSn, The, 58 ; Ruskin 
on, 168, 171, 175 i models for, 273 

Pin well, George, influence of, in Kate 
Greenaway's work, 272 ; style of, 282 

Ponsonby, Hon. Gerald, 167 ; portraits 
belonging to, 270 { commission from, 
172 ; portraits of children of, 180 ; 
letters from Kate Greenaway to, 181, 
182, 184, 186 

Ponsonby, Lady Maria, 167 j letters from 
Kate Greenaway to, 185, 187, 209, 
212, 220, 231 J member of Memorial 
Committee, 256 

Ponsonby, Miss Eileen, portrait of, 276 

Ponsonby, Miss Joan, portrait of, 276 



. I 

Kate Greenaway 

Ponsonby, Miss Mabel, portrait of, 276 

* Poor Nelly/ 280 

Portraitist, Kate Greenaway as a, 275 

* Portrait of a Lady/ 276 

* Portrait of a Little Boy, A,' at Royal 

Institute (1880), 178 
'Portrait of a Little Lad/ at Royal 

Academy (1890), 178 
Portraits in oils, 237 
Pneterita (by John Ruskin), reference in, 

to MavcTy 1 2 9 ; to Dame ff^ggita^ 1301 

145, 151 $ Kate Greenaway on, 

161 ; last chapter of, 175 
Princess Christian, Kate Greenawiy's 

meeting with, 27, 224 ; introduction 

to, 100 ; correspondence with, 100 
Princess Louise, meeting with, 241 
Princess Maud of Wales, wedding present 

for, 201 
Princess Royal, meeting with, 27 

* Processions/ drawings of, 211, 216, 274 
I^ncA, first appearance in, 86 ; references 

to Kate Greenaway in 1881, X02 ; 
*Grinaway Christnus Cards,* 102, 

^uutt e/tJke Pirate IsUy TAe, 58 $ Ruskin on, 
156 } publication of, 163 j vignette on 
title-page of, 282 

Slueen Victoria** yubilee Garland, publica- 
tion of, 163 

^ttfvtfr of Love, illustrations in, 47 ; 
publication of, 53 

Reading Books (Longman's), Kate Green- 
away's refusal to illustrate, 184 

Religion, Kate Greena way's views of, 189, 
190, 234, 235 

* Rescue, The * (Sir J. E. Millais, P.R.A.), 

Kate Greenaway on, 229 
Richards, Miss Laura E., verses by, 183 
Richmond Ritchie, Mrs., letters to and 

from, 98 ; friendship with, too, 167 j 

proposed collaboration with, 100 
Roberts, Lord, meeting with, 237 
Robinson, Mr. Lionel, on Kate Greenaway 

as children's artist, 62, x8o 

* Rock, Moss, and Ivy,' drawing by Kate 

Greenaway in Sheffield Museum, 1 34 
Rolleston, the Chappells* house at, xo ; 

visits to, 28, 33 ; fire at, 35 
RoBsetti, D. G., Kate Greenaway on 

work of, 229, 231 
Routledge, Messrs., work for, 100 ; Little 

fVtde • Awake, frontispiece to, 85; 

E-uery GirPs Ammal, 85 \ Motktr 
Goou, 100 ; Christmas NwiUfer, frontis- 
piece ('Little Fanny'), 10 x ; A Day 
in a Chiles Life, xox $ Almanack, first 
(X883), X225 A Apple Pie, 155, 156, 
x6o J PudPitfcr ofHamelin, success of, 
X7X $ Book oj Games, X74 ; Almanacks 
for, X 892-95, x8i 

Rover, biography of, 164, X95, 198, 207, 
236, 237, 244 

Rowfant, Kate Greenaway's visits to, 86, 

Royal Academy, first exhibit at, 55 ; 
'Little Girl with Doll' (X878), 69 , 
'Misses' (X879), 78; 'Little Girl 
with Fan * (1880), 85 $ ' Portrait of a 
Little Lad' (X890), 178; 'A Girl's 
Head' (X89X), X79J 'Baby Boy' 
at (X895), 192 

Royal Institute of Painters in Water - 
Colours, Kate Greenaway elected a 
Member of, X74, 178, 271 ; exhibits 
at (1890), X78{ (1891) 'An Old 
Farm House,' ' A Cottage in Surrey,* 
179; (1894) 'A Girl' at, 184; 
(1895) exhibits at, 192, 197 ; (X896) 
'Little Bo -Peep' at, 20 x ; last 
exhibits at, in 1897: 'Girl in Hat 
and Feathers/ 'Two Little Girls in 
a Garden/ 2x1 

Rcyal Progrea of King Pepito, Tke, X74 

Royal Society of Britiah Artists. Su 
Suffolk Street Gallery 

Ruskin, John, on Kate Greenaway's work, 
5 $ on Under the fflndoto, 63 ; Lecture 
on Mrs. Allingham and Kate Green- 
away, 65, 1x4 J first meeting with 
Kate Greenaway, xioj on Mother 
Goose drawings, X05, xi6; on Kate 
Greenaway design on glass, xo6 j 
on the 1884 Almanack, X27 ; on 
Langnage ofFlawerSy x 28 ; on Mavors 
English Spelling Book, 128 ; on Dame 
Wiggins of Lee, 130; portrait of, by 
Kate Greenaway, X35; suggested 
collaboration with Kate Greenaway 
in a book on Botany, X36 ; on 
Millais' portraits of 'The Marquess 
of Lome ' and ' Miss Nina Lehmann * 
(Lady Campbell), 137; references to 
Miss Francesca Alexander, 133, X38 ; 
on house at Frognal, 142 ; illness of, 
X45, X51, X54, X70; Pr^eterita^ 
autobiography of, X45, X51, 175 > 
Kate Greenaway on, x6i ; * Natural 



History of a dull Beach,' 146, 154; 
on drawingt from the Nude, 147 ; 
on Languagt of Flower t, 149 ; on 
Corre^mdenct of Sir Philip Sidntf and 
Hubert Langiiety 154; on A Apple 
Pie^ 156 ; on Mrs. AUingham, 161 j 
practice of destroying letters, etc^ 
163 ; instructs Kate Greenaway in per- 
spective, 167 ; on John Greenaway 
as his rival therein, 168 ; on Pied 
Piper drawings, 168, 172, 175 j on 
Bellini's * Venus, Mistress of the 
World,' 168; Ckrist's Folk in the 
Apennines 170 ; last foreign tour, 175 ; 
visit of Kate Greenaway to, 186 ; as 
' Mr. Herbert ' in Tke New Rtptdtlicy 
215 ; death of, 248 
letters to Kate Gnenaway from, 82, 
83. 84, 99, 105, 109, 110, 114, "5» 
117, 118, 119, 120, 121, 122, 127, 
128, 132, 133, 134, 135, 136, 137, 
138, 139, 140, 142, 143, i4S» H^t 
147, 148, 149, 150, 151, 152, 153, 

»54t ^$S^ 15^. i57» 158, i6o, 161, 
166, 168, 169, 170, 171, 172, 175, 
176, 177 
letters from Kate Greenaway to, 160, 
164, 165, 166, 187, 188, 195, 196, 
197, 198, 199, 200, 202, 203, 205, 
206, 207, 208, 209, 211, 212, 214, 
215, 216, 217, 218, 219, 220, 221, 
228, 229, 230, 231, 232, 233, 234, 
235, 236, 237, 238, 239, 240, 241, 
242, 243, 244, 245, 246, 247 
Rydal Mount, Kate Greenaway's visit to, 

* Sailor's Wife, A,' in English lUustrated 
Magaxine^ 184 

St. Albans, Duchess of, 167 

St. Helier, Lady. See Jeune, Lady 

St, Ives (R. L. Stevenson), Kate Green- 
away on, 221 

St, Nicholas^ drawings for, 78 

Sambourne, Mr. E. Linley, drawing of 
Kate Greenaway in Punch by, 86 j 
* Royal Birthday Book' by, 102 

Samuel, Mr. Stuart M., M.P., book-plate 
for, 182 ; commissions from : portrait 
of daughter, decoration of nurseries 
for, 211, 216$ letters from Kate 
Greenaway to, 106, 211 

Samuel, Mrs. Stuart M., references to, in 
Kate Greenaway's letters, 164, 167 ; 
letter from Kate Greenaway to, 252 

Samuel, Miss Vera, book-plate for, 182, 
226 i portrait of, 2x1, 275 

Saturday Seview on Under the fflndow, 

Scribner, first work for Messrs., 69; 
frontispiece to London Lyriet for, 88 

SeckendorfF, Count, 99 

Severn, Mrs. Arthur, on Ruskin and Kate 
Greenaway, no; friendship with, 
141 ; letter to Kate Greenaway from, 
x66j letters from Kate Greenaway 
to, Preface, 70, 201, 251, 274 

Severn, Miss Lily, 167 

Severn, Miss Violet, Kate Greenaway 
writes and illustrates * A very Naughty 
Girl 'for, 141 ; 167 

Shaw, Mr. Norman, R.A., architect of 
Kate Greenaway's house, 142 ; friend 
of Kate Greenaway, 167 

Sheffield Museum, drawing, * Rock, Moss, 
and Ivy,' by Kate Greenaway in, 1 34 

'Shoe, The Kate Greenaway,' 123 

Shortness of sight, cause of Kate Green- 
away's faults of perspective, 168, 270 

Sidney^ 5<r Philips and Hubert Languet^ 
Ccrre^ondence of, 1$^ 

Silver medal gained at South Kensington 
in 1864, 42 

* Sisters,' colour of, 272 

Sketch-book, early, 277 

Small, Mr. William, influence of work of, 
on Kate Greenaway, 279 

&iew ^ueen, designs for, 251 

Spielmann, Mr. M. H., letters from Kate 
Greenaway to, 248, 249$ member 
of Memorial Committee, 256 

Spielmann, Mrs. M. H.* proposed illustra- 
tions to story by, 5 1 ; stories by, with 
illustrations by Kate Greenaway, 250 ; 
letters from Kate Greenaway to, 250, 

' Spring Copse, A,' sold, 183 

Spring flowers, Kate Greenaway's love for, 

'Standing for her Picture,' sale of, 183 

Stanley, Hon. Mrs., 100 

Stanley, Miss Dorothy, visit to South- 
wold with, 201 

Stanley, Miss Madeline, 230, 231 

Stevenson, Robert Louis, inspired by 
Birthday Book, jj 

'Stick Fire, The,' sold, 183; beauty of, 

Stothard, influence of, on Kate Green- 
away, 270 


Kate Greenaway 

* Stowaway, The* (Sir J. E. Millai*, 

P.R.A.), Kate Greenaway on, 228 

* Strawberries,' influence of G. D. Leslie, 

R^., in, 270 
Suffolk Street Gallery, ' A Peeper,' 50 

* Surrey Cottage, A,' influence of Mrs. 

AUingham in, 269 

* Swransdown,' 272 

* Taking a Nosegay,' at Royal Institute 

(i895)» >9S 
Tate Gallery, the, Kate Greenaway on, 242 

Temps, Le, on Kate Greenaway's work, 268 

Tennyson, family, friendship with, 88 $ 

references to, in Kate Greenaway's 

letters, 164, 167 
Tennyson, Lord, last meeting with, 237 

* The Seasons,' sold, 76 
Theatre, early visits to the, 19 
Thomas, William L., on Kate Green- 
away's early work for Tie GrafAic, 56 

Thompson, Miss Elizabeth (Lady Butler), 
on student days with Kate Green- 
away, 43 

Thorne, Aunt, and her garden, 1 5 

* Thoughts of the Sea,' sold, 224 
'Three Girls in White,' in Victoria and 

Albert Museum, 256 

* Three Innocents,' sold, 76 
Time and Tune, designs for, 85 

* Time of Roses, The,' sold, 76 

Times, The, on vV Day m a Oald^sLiJe, 10 1 
Topo: A Tale about English Children in 
Italy, illustrations for, 47 ; publica- 
tion of, in 1878, 67 \ sale of draw- 
ings for, 76 
*Toy Horse, The,' sold, 183 

* Tracts,' payment for, 50 

Trendell, Sir Arthur, Hon. Sec, of 

Memorial Committee, 256 
Trojan, Hcrr, on Under the ff^ndofw, 85 
Trotter, Miss Lilias, reference to, by 

Ruskin, 155, 156 
Turner, J. M. W., R.A., Ruskin on, 1 34 
*Two at a Stile,* 271 

* Two Girls in a Garden,' sold, 224 

* Two Little Girls in a Garden,' at Royal 

Institute (1897), 211 
*Two Little Sisters,' sold, 183 

* Under the Rose Tree,* sold, 183 

Under the fVindow, story of its production, 
57 > popularity of, 60 ; Saturday 
Review on, 61 ; verses in, 62 ; ex- 
hibition of drawings for, at Fine 

Art Society, 63 ; designs copied on 
majolica ware at Buda Pesth, 79 ; 
translation into German, 85 ; recep- 
tion of, in Germany, 85, 281 ; draw- 
ings for, criticised for lack of per- 
spective, 167 ; models for, 273 ; 
French and Belgian edition of, 281 

Valentines, first designs for, 44 ; designed 

for Marcus Ward Sc Co., 47 
Van Baerle's Gallery, Glasgow, exhibition 
of Kate Greenaway's drawings at, 181 
Varley, Miss, school of, 38 
Velasquez, Kate Greenaway on, 218 
Venetian Exhibition, Kate Greenaway on, 

Verses by Kate Greenaway, 38, 62, 254, 

257 et seq, 

Victoria and Albert Museum, Kate Green- 
away's work in, 256 

Victorian Exhibition, Kate Greenaway on, 

Vie de Paris, La, on Kate Greenaway's 
work, 268 

* Violets, Sir ? * 277 

Vyvyan, Miss, fellow-student and friend of 
Kate Greenaway, 167 

Walker, Mr. David, purchaser of Almanach 

(1893) drawings, 182 
Walker, Fred, A.R.A., influence of, on 

Kate Greenaway's work, 270 
Wall-papers, Almanack (1893) designs sold 

for, 182 
Ward, Marcus, 8c Co., Christmas cards 

designed for, 46 ; valentines designed 

for, 48 ; cessation of connection with, 

48 ; Christmas cards for, 50 ; The 
Sluruer of Love, 53 j Topo, 68 

Ward, Mr. William Marcus, as adviser, 

49 ; on illustrations to Topo, 68 
Wardle,Sir Thomas, Chairman of Memorial 

Committee, 256 
Warne, Frederick, tc Co. See Preface and 

List of Works 
Webb, Sir Aston, R.A., on Memorial 

Committee, 256 
Wedderburn, Mr. A., K.C., 112 
Hliat the Moon Saw, designs for, 251 
Wheels of Chance, The, Kate Greenaway on, 

Whistler, J. M*N., Kate Greenaway on, 

White, Gleeson, on Kate Greenaway's 

designs for Christmas cards, 76 



Whitelands College, Kate Greenaway iV 

May-day celebration at, 201 
Wite, Aunt, visit to, 10 
Women and Woman's Suflfrage, Kate 

Greenaway on, 212 
* Women of Amphissa, The ' (Sir L. 

Alma-Tadema, O.M., R.A.), Kate 

Greenaway on, 219 
Wwdarfid f^isit^ The^ Kate Greenaway on, 


WcedUmden, Tke (Mr. Thomas Hardy), 
Kate Greenaway on, 238 

Wordsworth, visit of Kate Greenaway to 
country of, 187 ; Kate Greenaway on 
* Intimations of Immortality ' of, 189 

<Yea' (Sir J. £. Millais, P.R.A.), Kate 
Greenaway on, 228 

Yonge, Charlotte, Kate Greenaway's illus- 
trations to novels of, 77, 281 


Printed i^ R. & R. Clark, Limited, Edinburgk, 



■AOH 20s. NKT 

"Of an Ood's glfU to the sight of mmn^ 
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most solemn."— i?«»bii. 



























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tempered enjoy colour; it Is meant for the 
perpetual comfort and delight of the human 
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